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Ireland Wastes Over One Million Meals Each Day.

  • Ireland generated 750,000 tonnes of food waste in 2022.
  • Food waste in Ireland has not significantly decreased over the first three years of national reporting.
  • 70% of food waste was generated by businesses and industries across the food supply chain, 30 per cent by households.

New figures released by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today show that over 750,000 tonnes of food waste was generated in Ireland in 2022. There has been no significant change in the amount of food waste generated in the first three years of national statistics reporting, (Namely the years 2020, 2021 and 2022).

Over 70% of food waste was generated by food & drink sector businesses and 30% by households. This is food wasted during production, manufacturing and processing, distribution, at retail level, in restaurants and in our homes.

Mr David Flynn, Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Sustainability said: “As a nation, Ireland is wasting too much food – over one million meals a day – which is a significant resource and economic loss. With 70% of food waste generated by food & drink businesses across the supply chain, there is a clear obligation on this sector to focus on preventing food waste. Signing up to the EPA’s Food Waste Charter is a positive statement that your business is serious about taking action to measure and reduce food waste.
Unavoidable food waste should be segregated for recycling. Waste collectors are required to provide an organic waste bin so all businesses should now have a 3-bin system in place.”

Mr Warren Phelan, Programme Manager, EPA Circular Economy Programme said: “Waste collectors are obliged to provide their household customers with a food waste collection service since January 2024. Greater coverage and rollout of the organic waste bin is key to segregating food waste and increasing recycling through composting and anaerobic digestion.
Food waste costs each household an average of €700 per year. Knowing the food you waste is the first step to prevent waste at home and the EPA’s Stop Food Waste programme provides lots of practical information to support householders.”

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