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Speakers and programme announced for landmark national ‘Fresher for Longer’ conference: 5th February 2014

The first ever national ‘Fresher for Longer’ conference planned for 5th February 2014 looks set to enjoy high profile speakers.

Defra’s newly appointed Minister for Resource Management, Dan Rogerson MP (Liberal Democrat) is confirmed.  Also confirmed is Ms Kerry McCarthy MP (Labour) Shadow Minister for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office; and Mark Pawsey MP (Conservative) Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Packaging.

Attendance of all three main political parties demonstrates the collective effort needed to reduce food waste, and highlights a key policy message that good packaging plays a pivotal role in keeping food ‘fresher for longer’ from the farm to the home – and in the home too.

The partners who developed the Fresher for Longer campaign are delighted with the cross party political support.  The conference is aimed at supporting councils, retailers, brands and related supply chain organisations to take forward the FFL campaign in 2014.

Jane Bickerstaffe, Director of INCPEN said,‘It’s really important the Fresher for Longer campaign gets out there to the public.  People know food waste is an environmental disaster in developing countries but it is also a huge environmental problem in developed ones. This major conference aims to bring councils, retailers and other supply chain companies together so they can jointly tackle this by communicating with residents in their areas.’

Dick Searle, CEO of the Packaging Federation said, ‘The UK is turning the corner from seeing all packaging as negative to realising packaging has played, and will play, major roles in reducing food waste.  This conference will serve to hasten the pace of perception change’.

David Bellamy, Environment Policy Manager at the Food and Drink Federation said, ‘FDF members work very hard to provide consumers with a large choice of safe, nutritious, appetising and affordable food and drink products.  So it’s in everyone’s interests that the value and role of packaging to preserve the safety and quality of these products and prevent them from going to waste right along the supply chain including in the home is now beginning to be recognised’.

Liz Goodwin, CEO, WRAP and speaking at the conference said, ‘Reducing food waste is a global issue.  There’s a lot of work to do and I’m pleased the UK is at the forefront of activities to minimise food waste - developing and maintaining campaigns like Fresher for Longer will help deliver the reductions we all want to see.’

Cllr Paul Barrington-King, Chair of the Kent Resource Partnership said, ‘The campaign message is very important and so is the Partnership’s approach to deliver it.  The KRP is proud to work so productively with organisations across the supply chain.’

Alice Ellison, Environment Policy Adviser at the British Retail Consortium said, ‘The Fresher for Longer campaign messages are fully endorsed by BRC members.  We strive to provide consumers with packaging that keeps products safe, fresh and minimises waste at home’.

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Editor’s Notes

1.  The ‘Fresher for Longer’ (FFL) campaign founders are:  The Industry Council for research on Packaging and the Environment (INCPEN); The Packaging Federation (PF); The Food and Drink Federation (FDF); the Kent Resource Partnership (KRP); and the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP).  The British Retail Consortium (BRC) supports the campaign.

2.  Further media information can be gained directly from the campaign partners.

3.  The launch of the FFL campaign took place on 5th March 2013 at the Tunbridge Wells food store of launch-exclusive-retailer Marks & Spencer plc.  Simultaneously, on behalf of the founders, WRAP published detailed research to support the campaign titled, ‘Consumer Attitudes to Food Waste and Food Packaging’.  

4.  Since its launch the FFL campaign has received growing support from Parliamentarians, industry and councils.  Very recent developments include the inclusion of FFL at a hearing on Wednesday 20th November 2013 of the House of Lords EU Sub-Committee on Agriculture, Fisheries, Environment and Energy.  The FFL campaign also won the Editor’s Award at the UK Packaging Awards held on 13 November 2013.

5.  Campaign creatives were paid for and developed by the founders, but are available to all councils, retailers, brands and others on a no-fee basis.