Morrisons has announced it will lose the ‘use-by’ date from 90 per cent of its milk bottles as a way to better fight food waste.
Instead of abiding by the ‘use-by date’, from the end of January the supermarket chain will ask customers to sniff the milk and see if it’s still drinkable, urging shoppers to check the texture too.
Bottles will maintain the ‘best before’ date, but this will indicate to customers when they should drink it by to have the best taste, not when it needs to be thrown away.
Milk is Morrisons’ third product to have the ‘use-by’ date removed following some of supermarket’s own-brand yogurt and hard cheese in 2020.
“Wasted milk means wasted effort by our farmers and unnecessary carbon being released into the atmosphere,” said Morrisons’ senior milk buyer Ian Goode.
“Good quality well-kept milk has a good few days life after normal ‘use by’ dates – and we think it should be consumed not tipped down the sink.”
According to sustainability NGO WRAP, every year 490 million pints are wasted in the UK, making milk the third most wasted product in the country after potatoes and bread. WRAP has estimated that out of those 490 million, 85 million are thrown away because customers stick to the ‘use-by’ date.
Milk is also incredibly polluting as it takes 4.5kg of CO2 to produce a litre.
“Almost 300,000 tonnes of milk is wasted from UK homes each year, worth £270m, with the main reason being that it isn’t used in time,” added WRAP’s chief executive Marcus Gover. “It is fantastic to see Morrisons, as a Courtauld signatory, making this change – giving people the confidence to use their judgment and consume more of the milk they buy.”
Morrisons is one of the many companies that signed the Courtauld commitment 2030, a voluntary agreement to deliver reductions in food waste and CO2 emissions.