Sainsbury’s ties with Google to help families cut waste food and save money

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New Food Rescue tool

New Food Rescue tool

Sainsbury’s has launched an interactive mobile and online tool in partnership with Google to give people practical help and inspiration on using up ingredients that can often lay forgotten at the back of the fridge or cupboard.

Sainsbury’s Food Rescue aims to satisfy Brits’ growing appetite to waste less as busy, cash-conscious families continue to rediscover habits such as meal planning and using leftovers to make their hard-earned money go further. WRAP data estimates that 4.2m tonnes of avoidable food and drink is still wasted each year, leading to the average family losing out on £60 each month. Sainsbury’s Food Rescue has the potential to help families make those savings through offering inspiration on how to use up the food they already have.

New data from Google reveals that searches for recipes using leftovers have surged by one third compared to last year, with 64% of searches done on-the-go via mobile devices. Sainsbury’s Food Rescue fuses the latest mobile voice recognition technology with recipe inspiration to offer families practical help and advice whether they are at home or on the move, helping make their food go further. Users can say or input up to nine ingredients and in return they will be presented with recipe inspiration from more than 1,200 choices, including anything from showstopping suppers to simple snacks.

In a bid to unleash the nation’s competitive spirit, Sainsbury’s Food Rescue uses live technology to record the weight of food rescued and the money saved per completed recipe in a fun, interactive way. This feeds into a leaderboard to show which regions across the UK lead the way when it comes to rescuing their food. Users can also see the most rescued ingredient in their region and the most popular recipes being cooked across the UK.

Speaking about the new technology, Sarah Warby, marketing director of Sainsbury’s, said: “Shopping habits have really changed. Families are savvier than ever, looking for practical help to make the most of the food in their cupboards and fridges.

“We know that confidence and know-how can really help people reduce the amount of food they throw away.  We’ve created Sainsbury’s Food Rescue with Google to inspire people to turn the food items they already have into something delicious. And over the months ahead we’ll be able to see how much food and money British households are saving by using Sainsbury’s Food Rescue, as well as the popular ways to save.”

Indy Saha, director of creative strategy at Google, said: “More people in Britain are online than ever before and this growth is driven by tablets and smartphones. The average household in the UK has around 3.1 devices – the highest in Europe.

“Using our voice search technology, the Food Rescue tool allows Sainsbury’s customers to use up the food that they might otherwise throw away. Simply say what ingredients you have left and discover simple inspirational  recipes. Whether you are on the way home thinking about what’s for dinner, at the supermarket lacking inspiration or in the kitchen, the tool will help you save and get better value for money by not wasting food.”

Welcoming the move, Emma Marsh of WRAP’s Love Food Hate Waste campaign, said: “Our research has shown that one of the main reasons that we throw away food from our homes is because we don’t get around to eating it before it’s gone past it’s best. We’re delighted to have worked with Sainsbury’s helping customers to reduce their food waste with the launch of Sainsbury’s Food Rescue. It’s a fantastic tool which can help everyone to make the most of their forgotten foods and leftover ingredients by providing some tasty recipe ideas.”