The importance of everyone playing their part in reducing food waste has been outlined on national stop food waste day (Friday 1 March) by Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue.

Minister McConalogue highlighted research suggesting that the average Irish household could save €700 by avoiding food waste.

“Reducing our food waste at home makes financial sense, as well as being a climate action we can take every day.

“We all lead busy lives. Research conducted in Ireland shows that leftovers, bread, fruit and vegetables are the foods most likely to go to waste,” he said.

Stop food waste challenge

The focus of this year's national stop food waste day is encouraging people to know more about their food waste habits by taking the stop food waste challenge.

It invites people to record and track their food waste over a week to see what they waste, where they can make savings on their food bill and what actions they can take to reduce the food they waste the most.

“Reducing our food waste shows how much we recognise and respect our primary producers, processors and those who work to provide us with that food,” Minister McConalogue said.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimated that Ireland generated 753,000t of food waste in 2021.

Some 29% of the total of that food waste came from households, 29% from the processing and manufacturing sector and 25% from restaurants and food service.