Food waste is a global problem that’s becoming so severe it can no longer be ignored.


The rise of food poverty

The rising levels of food poverty in the UK highlight the need for immediate action. Over 20,00,000 meals were distributed throughout 2013/14 through the three main food distributors. This was a 54% increase on 2012/13. As food prices rise rapidly, it becomes even more vital that we prevent as much food from being thrown away as possible.

Source: Trussell Trust


The number of UK festivals is rising every year

The UK festival scene has expanded significantly over the last ten years, but alongside the positive cultural contribution it makes come concerns about the waste it generates.

  • 14,000,000

    People planned to attend a festival in 2013

    Source: one poll

  • 770 +

    Festivals were planned in 2015

    Source: eFestivals


How much food waste do festivals generate?

Using EighthPlate’s research in conjunction with these figures, we can estimate the total food waste produced annually by the UK festival industry.

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  • 400 t

    of food is wasted at festivals each year

    Source: EighthPlate

  • 953,352

    meals go to waste from festivals annually

    Source: EighthPlate


Source: FareShare

The cost to the environment

Gathering and saving this food is beneficial on many levels. We don’t just create an opportunity to give the surplus food to vulnerable people who need it the most. We also prevent it from ending up in landfill, and therefore reduce carbon emissions.

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The bottom line

Recycling is another great opportunity to help dispose of waste, but the large amount of packaging associated with food makes it a difficult and lengthy process. This coupled with rising landfill costs means it’s much more sensible to redistribute food rather than recycle it.

For all these reasons EighthPlate believes that the redistribution of food waste across the festival industry should be seen as vital as recycling plastics and cardboard.

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Source: WRAP

Want to see how we can help reduce food waste at your event?