Reflecting on our announcement this week that we are trialling in 30 stores selling avocados in coloured trays made me think about the role of packaging in protecting products. When is packaging optimised and when is it excessive?

The reason the avocados are being sold in three types of coloured trays is to prevent product wastage. Our Buyer, Damien Gray, knows that avocados can be tricky to select the ripeness you want at the time you buy them and can too often be left unused until its too late and they end up in the bin! This colour coded packaging allows our customers to buy them with the level of ripeness to fit their menu, for example to buy avocados ready to eat now (choose the green colour pack), close to ripening (the orange colour) or with some time until they are ready to eat (the pink pack). The trial will show us whether this system works for our customers and continues our support for WRAP’s Love Food Hate Waste programme.

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Posted by Julian on 18 July 2012

If you read this blog regularly you’re probably aware that I run the Walmart global palm oil project. What you’re probably not aware of is the significant challenge in trying to hit our goal of only using sustainable palm oil in our private label products globally by end 2015. Over the past 18 months I’ve really dug deep into the issues and identified some key barriers.

Firstly the whole certified sustainable palm oil, CSPO, system is very technical – it’s even a challenge to identify the documentation required for our suppliers to prove to us that they are using it. Furthermore the market rules of supply and demand don’t seem to be helping here.

At the start of June I said ‘goodbye’ to the Walker-Palin clan and headed to the US for nearly a month to work on solutions.

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Posted by Julian on 13 July 2012

As you know from my previous post many of us are throwing away £50 every month by disposing of perfectly good food.

Sarah in my team has made it her personal mission to help our customers save money and live better and has worked with colleagues across Asda to communicate ways to help you use all the food you buy.

Well the government’s key body, WRAP, have just used her work as an example of industry good practice. Well done Sarah keep up the good fight!

Posted by Julian on 04 July 2012

As you know from my previous post we are really keen to help our supply base become more sustainable. This will help deliver our customers’ demand for greener products – see page 7.

The Asda Sustain & Save Exchange, details on the link above, has been extremely successful in creating a space where we can all collaborate and learn from each other. So much so that I will soon have some news for you about its future.

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Posted by Julian on 21 June 2012

Well apparently that’s what us Brits are throwing away in food every single month. To put it in context the Asda Income Tracker shows us that the average family has just £144 disposable income each week at the moment so an extra £50 a month would be a welcome boost.

Government research tells us that we throw away over 7.2 million tonnes of food and drink every year. And yes that even includes wine! Well not in the Walker-Palin house…

Not only would eating all this food save us £50 every month but it would also remove the environmental pollution equivalent of 1 in 5 cars. So worth going after whether you care about the environment or just want to waste less cash.

So how do you save £50? The government research shows two main ways, preparing just the right amounts of food and making sure you eat it before it goes off. I’d recommend shopping with a list too – or why not try shopping online.

Did you see our Asda Magazine article this month or hear it on Asda FM?

What’s your way to reduce food waste and save cash ? Tell us all below.

Posted by Julian on 28 May 2012