National nod for food waste reduction program

Waste Not Want Not showed residents that leftovers can be turned into meals that look (and taste) as delicious as this.

A Social Marketing @ Griffith program designed to reduce household food waste is a finalist in the Australian Marketing Institute’s 2017 Awards for Marketing Excellence.

Waste Not Want Not was designed in collaboration with Redland City Council, who approached Griffith University to conduct a pilot to help reduce food waste in their area – a costly problem both for the budget and the environment.

The average Australian household disposes of over $600 worth of food a year, while Redland City Council estimated 23 per cent of waste in a local household’s bin was food waste.

Consumer insights gained as part of a comprehensive social marketing process showed residents needed a better understanding of what they could make from contents left in their fridge.

Professor Sharyn Rundle-Thiele, Director of Social Marketing @ Griffith, said they wanted to find a creative way to deliver this information and prevent food waste.

“The Waste Not Want Not pilot partnered with chefs to deliver easy, time-saving, tasty recipes. All recipes were based on the foods that Redland City Council households usually had in their fridges,” she explained.

Social Marketing @ Griffith students Jeawon Kim and Sam Hodgkins, with Professor Sharyn Rundle-Thiele, hold Waste Not Want Not recipe cards.

“Delivery of cooking demonstrations helped us to engage thousands of Redland City Council residents to think about food waste.

“The two week pilot also delivered valuable experience to Griffith University students who had to learn how to engage people to talk about food waste in the Stockland Cleveland Shopping Centre.”

During the course of the campaign, more than 10,000 recipe cards and 5000 food samples were distributed to shoppers.

Feedback from shoppers was incredibly positive, with 71 per cent saying Waste Not Want Not had made them think about food waste.

The program is a finalist in the Social Marketing and Social Change category of the Awards for Marketing Excellence.

“Being recognised by Australia’s premier marketing association for our work in social marketing is an honour,” said Professor Rundle-Thiele.
“I have drawn on AMI Marketing Excellence award winners as case studies to teach the next generation of marketers, what marketing best practice looks like. AMI cases are featured in my classes and my Introductory marketing textbook.”

Winners will be announced in Melbourne on October 18.