New app wants to help reduce Buckinghamshire's 38,000 tonnes of annual food waste

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In Buckinghamshire, we produce 38,000 tonnes of food waste every year. Of this, 16,000 tonnes gets collected and is recycled to produce energy and fertiliser – but that still leaves 22,000 tonnes (58%) that goes into the general waste.

But as well as making sure that our food waste gets recycled properly at the kerbside, there's still a lot we can do to make sure that good food is eaten and enjoyed instead of being thrown away at all. National charity, WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme) estimates that the average UK household throws away £700 worth of food every year.

To help encourage more food recycling, Buckinghamshire County Council is using the power of mobile technology by partnering with OLIO, a free app that connects people and businesses so that food gets used rather than wasted.

This pioneering new approach allows people and businesses with excess food or ingredients that might otherwise go to waste the ability to offer them online for free collection by whoever wants them – it's a great way of sharing free food while helping to save the planet.

OLIO is really easy to use. To make an item available, simply open the app, add a photo, description, and when and where the item is available for pick-up. To access items, simply browse the listings available near you, request whatever takes your fancy and arrange a pick-up via private messaging. It's all for free and no money changes hands.

Warren Whyte, Buckinghamshire County Council Cabinet Member for Planning & Environment, said: "Food waste is a serious environmental issue and this truly innovative idea harnesses new technology to help make a difference. I'm delighted that the County Council is joining up with OLIO to give our residents and food outlets the opportunity to take part."

Olio’s co-founder, Tessa Cook said “We at OLIO can't wait to expand our app within Buckinghamshire, an area with such a passion for food waste reduction already established. ͞With Buckinghamshire's dynamic community and existing food waste efforts, it feels a perfect match for OLIO”

Anyone in Bucks can download the app for free via www.olioex.com/bucks