News - March 16, 2018

First waste shelf in the Netherlands to be launched in Wageningen

Text:
Tessa Louwerens

Next Tuesday, the first ‘Verspilling is Verrukkelijk’ (‘Waste is Scrumptious’) shelf will be inaugurated at Jumbo Verberne in the Tarthorst. In this living lab, WUR researcher will perform a six-month study into consumers’ acceptance of surplus products and ways to prevent food waste.

The shelf has already been prepared. © Toine Timmermans

The shelf is a collaboration between 18 entrepreneurs of the platform Verspilling is Verrukkelijk (website in Dutch),  CSR Netherlands, WUR and the municipality of Wageningen. Toine Timmermans, Programme manager sustainable food chains at Wageningen Food & Biobased Research, brought the parties together at the Verspillingsfabriek (Waste Factory) in Veghel. Entrepreneur George Verberne of the Jumbo supermarket in Tarthorst was enthusiastic from the start.

The shelf will contain various products that were made from other products that would otherwise have been discarded, fermented or processed into animal fodder. Products like soup made from crooked vegetables, beer brewed using old bread or soap produced from orange peels. This way, the supermarket hopes to increase consumers’ awareness of food waste.

Kromkommer
For the next six months, the shelf will act as a living lab, Timmerman explains. ‘We want to study what works best, which types of products and packaging are attractive, what type of consumers choose these products, what the ideal pricing is and what the best presentation of such a product is.’ At the start, about 40 different products will be available from various producers, such as Betuwse Krenkelaar, Kromkommer, Instock, Thijstea, BeeBlue, Yespers and Potverdorie. With time, the selection will change, Timmermans says.

On Tuesday 20 March at 10 o’clock, the shelf will be officially inaugurated by Louise Fresco, mayor Geert van Rumund and supermarket owner George Verberne, in the presence of several social entrepreneurs. This initiative is connected to the National programme ‘Samen tegen Voedselverspilling’ (Together against Food Waste) that will be launched on 20 March.