Wastage + Wasted




Environmental concerns and awareness is rapidly becoming one of the most important aspects of modern life. From the reduction in single use plastics to paper straws becoming common place in pubs and the growing trend in wonky vegetables and charities turning supermarket wastage into food for the less fortunate – wastage concerns and actions are part of everyday life.

Recent news that Waitrose was rated as the worst supermarket in the UK for food wastage shows the negative impact this can have on a brand’s perception. For the consumer, trust is crucial and in today’s society they want to be associated with brands that have the same ethos and ethics as they do, so these results will certainly have an impact on Waitrose’s customer base. Brands operate in a glass box and once the consumer sees inside something that they don’t like or doesn’t match their beliefs it becomes a challenge for brands to correct the new perceptions.

When we spoke to the KAM Community, 48% said that they were more concerned about food and package wastage now compared to 12 months ago, compared to just 10% who said ‘less’.

We often look to the Asian market to see where consumer trends are impacting the retail space, and the latest store opening of the brand UNPACKT in Singapore (image above) is leading the way when it comes to zero wastage. The store is package free and customers are encouraged to bring their own containers to fill up with goods ranging from dried foods to cleaning products.


This week it was announced that Canada is to become the second country in the world to fully legalise marijuana, after the senate approved legislation paving the way for recreational cannabis to be legally bought and sold within the next two or three months.  Analyst predict that cannabis sales could eventually be worth somewhere between C$5bn and C$7bn annually.

In the same week we also had Sajid Javid announce that the Government will review the rules on medicinal cannabis which could allow doctors to prescribe it in the UK. This comes after a historic case in which a mother of an epileptic son campaigned to allow him to medicate himself with the drug.  As of yet it seems unlikely that the UK will go as far as Canada in the short term but times are certainly changing and it wouldn’t be as big a shock as perhaps it would have seemed a few years ago.

We dived into the KAM Community again and asked them whether they would like to see cannabis legalised in the UK. Only 19% said NO, with 57% wanting medicinal use made legal and 24% wanting both medicinal and recreational cannabis made available legally. A stunning result that suggests the UK are open to following Canada’s lead.

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Blake Gladman

Hi, I'm Blake, Strategy & Insight Director at KAM. I look after all our research products and manage the collection and delivery of insight throughout KAM. I love long runs and good food (the perfect life balance).

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