Sainsbury’s launches mission to rescue food destined for the bin

Sainsbury’s has launched an interactive new mobile and online tool, Sainsbury’s Food Rescue, developed in partnership with Google. The tool gives 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 4.2 million 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.

Google Food Rescue

New data from Google reveals that searches for recipes using leftovers have surged by 1/3 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 Strategyat Google added: "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 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."

Users can access the tool via the following URL



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6 comments for “0605 Sainsbury’s launches mission to rescue food destined for the bin”

  • Rod Averbuch14 June 2014 at 15:38:04

    The large amount of food waste is a lose-lose situation for the environment, the struggling families in today’s tough economy and for the food retailers. There is no single cure, or silver bullet for food waste reduction therefore, we should address the food waste problem in every link in our food supply chain. For example, the excess inventory of fresh perishables close to their expiration on supermarket shelves, combined with the consumer “Last In First Out” shopping behavior, might be the weakest link of the fresh food supply chain. The new “Food Rescue” App combined with the “End Grocery Waste” App will encourage efficient in-store shopping that maximizes grocery retailer revenue. Offering in-store deals on fresh perishables approaching their expiration dates to be used in simple recipes will make fresh food affordable for all families and effectively reduce the global carbon footprint. Rod Averbuch Chicago, IL

  • HelenM11 July 2014 at 14:20:55

    Isn't there an Android app?

  • Thomas Knorpp11 July 2014 at 18:15:57

    Hi Helen - we didn't build an app so that Food Rescue would be available on all platforms. Thank you for commenting.

  • Sue12 July 2014 at 18:04:09

    Dont often make a comment on anything but just had to this time, well done Sainsbury. What a brilliant idea. Am going to tell my daughter. You must make sure people know about it though, could you afford some tv ads to get it across. I wouldn't have known if it hadn't come up in ad poits. But honestly well done. Sue

  • debbie27 July 2014 at 08:41:02

    How do i get this app on my phone.

  • Thomas Knorpp28 July 2014 at 08:48:30

    Hi Debbie - we built Food Rescue as a web app, there is nothing to download. However, most phones allow you to add bookmarks to websites and save these in prominent positions on your home screen.

About the article

  • Posted on: 05 June 2014
  • Type of article: Press release