The law follows a grassroots campaign in France by shoppers, anti-poverty campaigners and those opposed to food waste. In December a bill on the issue passed through the national assembly, having been introduced by the former food industry minister Guillaume Garot. French 'food waste' councillor calls on EC to adopt supermarkets law Read more Campaigners now hope to persuade the EU to adopt similar legislation across member states. Supermarket chain Carrefour, above, agreed the law would help increase food donations. Until now, if a dairy factory made yoghurts carrying the brand name of a supermarket, it had been a long, complex process to donate any excess to charity. This battle is only just beginning.
The law has been welcomed by food banks, which will now begin the task of finding the extra volunteers, lorries, warehouse and fridge space to deal with an increase in donations from shops and food companies. This means the food must be given out at a proper food bank or centre, where human contact and conversation is fostered, rather than, for example, simply organised as handoutson the street. Charities will be able to give out millions more free meals each year to people struggling to afford to eat. Crucially the law will also make it simpler for the food industry to give some excess products directly to food banks from factories. Now it would be faster and easier. France, so far, goes further than the UK, where the government has a voluntary agreement with the grocery and retail sector to cut food and packaging waste in the supply chain and does not have mandatory targets. People have been finding edible products thrown out just as their best-before dates approached. Supermarket chain Carrefour, above, agreed the law would help increase food donations. Under a law passed unanimously by the French senate, as of Wednesday large shops will no longer bin good quality food approaching its best-before date. We now have to fight food waste in restaurants, bakeries, school canteens and company canteens. This will hopefully allow us to push for those products. Share via Email This article is over 2 years old France wastes 7m tonnes of food annually. Derambarsh , who is a municipal councillor for Courbevoie, about five miles north-west of Paris, said: The law follows a grassroots campaign in France by shoppers, anti-poverty campaigners and those opposed to food waste. In recent years, growing numbers of families, students, unemployed and homeless people in France have been foraging in supermarket bins at night to feed themselves. Gary Calton for the Observer France has become the first country in the world to ban supermarkets from throwing away or destroying unsold food, forcing them instead to donate it to charities and food banks. French 'food waste' councillor calls on EC to adopt supermarkets law Read more Campaigners now hope to persuade the EU to adopt similar legislation across member states. This battle is only just beginning. Avoidable household food waste in the UK is associated with 17m tonnes of CO2 emissions annually. Other supermarkets deliberately binned food in locked warehouses for collection by refuse trucks. He said it would greatly increase an already emerging trend for supermarkets to donate to food banks. Until now, if a dairy factory made yoghurts carrying the brand name of a supermarket, it had been a long, complex process to donate any excess to charity. In December a bill on the issue passed through the national assembly, having been introduced by the former food industry minister Guillaume Garot. The campaign, which led to a petition, was started by the councillor Arash Derambarsh. Some supermarkets doused binned food in bleach, reportedly to prevent food poisoning from items taken from bins.
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