Scottish comedian and Love Island star, Iain Stirling, is partnering up with Zero Waste Scotland this Valentine’s Day to encourage Scots to love their leftovers.
Every year, £200m worth of food is wasted in Scotland’s hospitality sector. Around 34% of this is estimated to be ‘plate waste’ – good food left over at the end of a meal.
As hospitality businesses gear up for the year’s first seasonal busy spell, Iain Stirling is asking Scots to consider if they are ‘good to go’ – the nationwide scheme that encourages restaurant-goers to take home their leftovers.
Zero Waste Scotland research suggests as many as 42% of diners are currently too shy to ask for a doggy bag. It’s hoped the campaign will make Scots think twice before dumping good food this Valentine’s.
Iain Stirling said: ‘People used to think you were ‘cheap’ if you asked for a doggy bag, but that’s changing. It’s no longer something your dad insists on, just because the place you’re eating has an obligatory service charge!
‘I mean what’s not to love about saving the planet by eating tasty leftovers? With Good to Go, you can always take your half eaten lasagne home, in case your date isn’t keen on the idea.’
Ylva Haglund, Food Waste Campaigns Manager, Zero Waste Scotland, added: ‘Perfectly good food is going to waste right across Scotland due to the stigma of requesting a doggy bag.
‘Our Good to Go pilot showed that if restaurants across Scotland routinely offered doggy bags to their customers, it could save the equivalent of 800,000 full meals from going in the bin each year.
‘Wasted food is not only a waste of money, it’s also a major contributor to climate change. That’s because when we waste food, we also waste all the energy and resources that went into producing it and getting it to our table. On top of this, if food waste then ends up in landfill, it will generate even more emissions in the form of methane gas, many times more harmful than carbon dioxide.
‘With Iain’s help, we’re hoping to spark a change that encourages even more Scots to reappraise the humble doggy bag and ask to take their leftovers home this Valentine’s Day and all year round.’
Diners are being encouraged to spread the word about Good to Go by asking their local restaurant to join the scheme, which includes a free starter pack containing 300 boxes, bags and communications materials.
Find out more about the scheme here.