We’ve all had a lot to adapt to in 2020. When it comes to how the Covid-19 lockdown has affected our behaviours and attitudes towards food, we decided to carry out some research to understand the impact on people across the UK.
The story so far
In April this year, we spoke to 4,000 people nationwide, and they reported reducing the amount of food they were wasting by over a third. That’s quite an achievement. We were all taking on board some smart food-saving behaviours, averaging 6 per person, including planning our shops better, and cooking more creatively.
In June, we carried out more research to see how people’s behaviours were changing as lockdown measures started to ease.
As lockdown eases, has our behaviour changed?
- Unfortunately, levels of waste have started to creep back up. We’re still reporting wasting less than in our pre-lockdown days, but it’s going back up again.
- This is largely because our motivations are weakening: we’re no longer worried about not being able to get hold of food, or only being able to shop once or twice a week.
- The good news is that we’re trying more ways than ever to manage our food better. We’re now adopting an average of 7 behaviours each to make our food go further, including freezing more foods, saving leftovers, and checking the cupboards before we shop.
- A whopping 7 in 10 of us want to maintain some of our good behaviours post-lockdown, but a lot of us also think that time is a big barrier.
Keeping up the good work post-lockdown
While the situation around us changes, and our lives become busier, there are still ways to make a habit out of wasting less food. Here are some key, simple actions you can take to keep your food out of the bin, and we are here to help:
- Chill the fridge out! Your food will stay fresher for up to three extra days if your fridge is set to 0–5°C. Try our thermometer tool if you need help dialling it down.
- Super storage. Every food has its perfect place; our A–Z can help you find it!
- #RecipeInspiration. We’ve got loads of lovely recipes that can help you use up whatever’s in the kitchen.
- Date labels. There’s a difference between ‘use by’ and ‘best before’! Check out our guide to date labels and what they mean.
- Compleating. Did you know you can leave the skin on when you make mash? This simple hack will save time as well as reducing waste! Our guide to compleating has lots of suggestions for using every edible bit of your ingredients.
You can find more information about our recent survey on the WRAP website.