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| be Waste Wise | March 23, 2023

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“So much attention is paid to what’s wasted in the home when companies get a free pass for doing anything.” – A Q&A With The Ugly Fruit & Veg Campaign

Ugly Fruit & Veg Campaign

Ugly Fruit & Veg Campaign

Over the past few months, we have been publishing Q&A from organizations that featured in our Waste Pioneers list. This Q&A is with The Ugly Fruit and Veg Campaign.

The Ugly Fruit and Veg campaign uses funny, beautiful and amazing images of less than perfect produce in order to highlight the 20-40% of all produce that goes to waste due to strict grocer cosmetic standards. On Twitter, Instagram, We Heart It and Facebook the campaign has a monthly reach in the millions from almost 200,000 followers in more than 190 countries around the world. 

What aspects of waste do you think is least communicated about, but that which needs a lot more attention?

Transparency on food waste with big companies, especially supermarkets!

So much attention is paid to what’s wasted in the home when companies get a free pass for doing anything. They could and should be doing so much more.


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What are the challenges that your organization faced in your area of work? How did you overcome them?

Lately, with everything going (politically/socially), just getting the attention for food waste (and ugly produce) seems more difficult. The images I post used to draw a lot more media attention and I think supermarkets were more apt to change. Overcoming this right now may be a shift in strategy from petitions to something else. Stay tuned as we’ve got something in the works.

Are there any recent campaigns from Ugly Fruit & Veg that you would like to share?Ugly Fruit & Veg Campaign

In the coming weeks we’ll have something to share, regarding a partnership on a big project with the Center for Biological Diversity to work on food waste transparency with supermarkets. Other than that, we’ve got a couple new petitions from earlier this year (Albertsons and Sobeys). 

We discussed Collective Action in the  bWW 2017 Global Dialog on Waste. How do you think Collective Action relates to Ugly Fruit & Veg’s work? Who are the stakeholders that play in part in ensuring this collective action?

We think the supermarkets working together with suppliers and customers to determine what is the most feasible and desirable. There is a lot of wasted “ugly” produce out there and, with a small amount of fun marketing and education, these programs can do very well.

Featured Image: Photographs from The Ugly Fruit & Veg Campaign

Read other Q&A here.

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