As February draws to a close, Lidl will start rolling out a new anti-food waste strategy in 3,200 stores across Germany.
Food products approaching their expiration dates will carry ‘50% off stickers’, rather than the current 30%, and be placed in green cardboard boxes in-store. The boxes display ‘I’m still good’ (Ich bin noch gut in German) on the side.
The initiative will cover several food categories, including dairy, fresh produce, baked goods, dry goods, and frozen, and the box will be strategically placed next to promotional items to attract shoppers’ attention.
“Food belongs on the plate and not in the bin,” noted head of sales at Lidl Germany Tomasz Kuzma. “With ‘I’m still good’ we can save food together with our customers in a targeted and easy way.”
Trialling the new strategy in regional stores has achieved promising reductions in food losses – in the double-digit percentage range, he continued.
“The striking and significant reduction appeals to customers specifically and helps us as a company to have to throw away less expired food.”
Too Good To Go tie-up
The ‘I’m still good’ boxes feed into Lidl’s 2030 sustainability strategy, under which the retailer has pledged to reduce food losses and organic waste by 2025.
Lidl Germany has also partnered with Danish start-up Too Good To Go to help educate consumers about the difference between ‘use by’ and ‘best before’ consumption dates on-pack.
According to the anti-food waste company, which provides a marketplace connecting businesses which have surplus food with consumers looking to ‘rescue’ these meals, there is much confusion surrounding consumption dates on food labels.
Indeed, 53% of Europeans don’t know the difference between ‘best before’ and ‘use by’, the start-up estimates.
The Too Good To Go collaboration sees Lidl apply a ‘I often last longer than you think’ sticker to certain own-label foodstuffs. This reminds consumers at home to trust their own senses and to examine, smell and taste food before throwing it away, noted the retailer.
Earlier this month, an anti-food waste pact was signed in France by more than 40 food players, including Nestlé, Danone, Carrefour, and Intermarché. The agreement similarly aims to reduce ‘best before’ and ‘use by’ date confusion on-pack.