Calling all Londoners - Make a ‘Small Change, Big Difference’ to eat well and fight food waste
This November, a new campaign launches in the capital to help Londoners make a big difference to their health, pockets and the planet by getting savvier with their food. The campaign is all about eating more healthily and sustainably, reducing the food we waste at home and recycling more of the inedible bits.
The ‘Small Change, Big Difference’ campaign will see nine boroughs across the capital hosting events, workshops, food waste dinners and a wide variety of food-related fun to help Londoners eat better, waste less and recycle what can’t be eaten.
Over the next two years the ‘Small Change, Big Difference’ team will be working with local residents - young, old and everyone in-between - to create local pop-up dining events, raw food art photography and food-related installations by local artists. The campaign will share mouth-watering recipes, exclusive online cookery classes as well as life hacks and tips to save time, money and get all of us better at recycling the bits that can’t be eaten. For more information and to sign up for events and workshops check out www.smallchangebigdifference.london.
The first three boroughs involved are Lambeth, Hackney and Merton.
- Lambeth and Merton are recruiting the older generation to share their wisdom by creating online food ‘hacks’, challenging younger residents to get clever with their cooking.
- Merton Council have also enlisted the help of Wimbledon College of Arts students to create food-related installations around the borough and showcase raw food photography from local residents, to promote healthy sustainable eating.
- Lambeth residents will see cinema advertising about the campaign in their local cinemas, and be offered free food storage items and a free food waste guide to the borough, with recipes, top tips and a map to local organisations they can support.
- In Hackney they’re showcasing a local photographer’s beautiful photos of raw fruit and veg by taking over Hackney Central Station. Local residents will also have the chance to win two tickets to a cookery class at Made In Hackney by submitting their own raw food art photos, as well as the opportunity to experience a free three course dinner using ingredients many households throws away, at Hackney restaurant Wringer and Mangle.
Why are these changes important?
Research behind the campaign* revealed that London households throw away almost 900,000 tonnes of food each year. What’s more, Londoners are spending a whopping £1.4 billion each year on buying food, with councils paying around £50 million to dispose of it when it becomes waste. Not only is this waste environmentally damaging but each one of us could save up to £60 a month by slightly changing the way we shop, prepare, store and eat our food. We can also help the environment by changing the way we dispose of our food.
Charlotte Henderson, from the ‘Small Change, Big Difference’ campaign, comments: “We want to help everyone in our amazing capital city make small, achievable changes that will make a big difference to their health, pockets and the planet. We’re all busy people. That’s why we’re concentrating on small changes – like buying the occasional pack of frozen veg instead of fresh, or stretching a pack of beef mince across two meals instead of one by adding in some more vegetables, or even as simple as recycling used teabags in your food waste collection – to help make that difference, one small change at a time.”
Small Change, Big Difference is part of a project funded by the LIFE Programme of the European Union awarded to Resource London – a partnership between WRAP and the London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) – and Groundwork London. The goal of the project is to encourage Londoners to change the way they shop, prepare, store, eat and dispose of food and become more sustainable.
* Research by WRAP, the not-for-profit sustainability organisation (see below)
Notes to editors:
Small Change, Big Difference is communicating key messages encouraging:
- Better food purchasing and consumption habits to promote healthy and sustainable eating
- Food waste prevention - avoiding good food from ending up in the bin
- That any food waste that is produced in the home is recycled in a separate food waste bin
- Food that’s good for your body is often good for the environment too. Beans, pulses, fruit and vegetables aren’t just packed full of the nutrients we need, they’re better for the planet too. These lean, green foods result in fewer emissions and generally require less water than animal products as well as keep your heart ticking over.
Food waste prevention
- It’s easy for the food in your fridge or cupboard to be forgotten. The use-by date arrives before you know it and you’ve failed (again) to make it last.
- But a few simple changes can help. Why not swap some of your fresh fruit and veg for frozen or canned? They’re rich in nutrients and last much, much longer. Or freeze those last few slices of bread and use them later for toast or garlicky croutons. It’s not stale bread, it’s cooking bread!
Food waste recycling
- Recycling food is as important as any other type of recycling, so whether it’s tea bags, potato peelings or egg shells, every last bit of unavoidable food waste belongs in your caddy. So, let’s make it the norm, the default – a non-negotiable part of being a Londoner: something you’d do as naturally as stand on the right and walk on the left of an Underground escalator. Mind the waste.
Whilst the campaign is London-wide, nine boroughs are receiving additional support to promote the Small Change, Big Difference campaign to their local residents. They are:
Bexley, Croydon, Hackney, Hounslow, Islington, Lambeth, Merton, Sutton and Tower Hamlets.
Visit the website for more information: www.smallchangebigdifference.london
Notes to Editors:
TRiFOCAL London – Transforming City FOod hAbits for Life, is an initiative being led by Resource London - the partnership between WRAP and LWARB - together with Groundwork London. The organisations won a bid with the LIFE programme of the European Commission to deliver the initiative in London, which will be a test bed for other European cities.
First established in 2000, WRAP is a not for profit organisation and registered charity whose vision is a world where resources are used sustainably. WRAP works with governments, businesses and communities to deliver practical solutions to improve resource efficiency. Our mission is to accelerate the move to a sustainable resource-efficient economy through:
i. re-inventing how we design, produce and sell products,
ii. re-thinking how we use and consume products, and
iii. re-defining what is possible through re-use and recycling
The London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) has a remit to improve waste management in the capital. LWARB has developed a circular economy route map with the aim of turning London into a circular city, and will continue to deliver a series of initiatives to accelerate this transition.
About Groundwork London
Groundwork London is a social and environmental regeneration charity (registered charity no. 1121105). For almost 20 years we’ve been at the forefront of environmental and social regeneration in London; changing places and lives for the better, in some of the capital’s most disadvantaged neighbourhoods. In today’s challenging social and economic climate, the work we do has never been more important; creating better places, improving people’s economic prospects and helping people to live and work in a more sustainable way.
Our three over-arching objectives are:
- Creating better places – supporting people to work collectively to make their surroundings greener, safer and healthier and be actively involved in the way decisions are made about services in their area.
- Promoting greener living and working – helping people and businesses learn more about their environmental impact and act responsibly to reduce natural resource use and improve their health.
- Improving people’s prospects – delivering support to increase the confidence, skills, well-being and employability of those furthest removed from the labour market, in particular young people.
For more information visit www.groundwork.org.uk/london or follow us on Twitter @GroundworkLON or on Facebook www.facebook.com/GroundworkLondon
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Tel: 020 7010 0831