Sainsbury’s is set to open Sainsfreeze, a new walk-in freezer concept store that will show customers how to freeze a range of foods usually deemed unfreezable, saving surplus food going to waste and helping people save money.
Opening in London’s Boxpark, Shoreditch, between 27-28 September, the first of its kind walk-in freezer looks like a regular Sainsbury’s from the outside, but once inside customers will be greeted with frozen groceries that they would usually buy fresh. Upon entering customers will be greeted by shelves stacked with fruit and veg, dairy, meat, fish and baked goods – but everything will be frozen. And it’s all being given away for free.
Foods normally found on each aisle will be frozen in innovative ways to help save space and keep food for longer, thus reducing food waste. From mixing wilting herbs with oil or water and freezing into ice cube trays – perfect for throwing straight into soups and stews – to portioning minced meat and freezing flat to save space, the retailer hopes the store will help teach customers new ways to freeze food that allows them to reduce waste in the home.
The items available have been selected off the back of research that revealed the items Brits most commonly throw away as they are about to go off, including milk, eggs, bread, and onions as well as other commonly wasted items foods, such as bananas and herbs.
Sainsbury’s is committed to halving food waste across its operations by 2030. The retailer has sent zero waste to landfill since 2013, and recently announced the removal of ‘best before’ dates on 276 products. Additionally, September marks one year since Sainsbury’s started working with Neighbourly, in which time it has donated over five million meals to those who need it most.
Ruth Cranston, Director of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability at Sainsbury’s says: “We recognise the way our customers shop and eat has benefits for their health and the planet too. It’s why our mission, helping everyone eat better, supports our customers to make healthier, more sustainable choices.
“When people think about climate change, food waste often gets overlooked. Around a third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted and it contributes a whopping 8-10% of greenhouse gas emissions globally each year. That is why we are launching Sainsfreeze, to help customers try and combat food waste and learn handy hints and top tips along the way. Innovative freezing not only allows us to save food we would otherwise have thrown away, but also to buy reduced food close to its use-by date, saving even more money on the weekly grocery bill.”
Catherine David, Director of Collaboration and Change at WRAP adds: “This is an excellent and unique concept from Sainsbury’s. We need to look at our food storage and how we can ensure we waste as little as possible. Sainsfreeze will certainly help inform people about storing their food, and what unexpected items they’re able to freeze to guarantee less food is wasted. With food waste costing the average household with children around £730 a year, and particularly in the current climate as we’re all looking for ways to save money wherever we can, this is really going to help our food last longer. It would be great to see more of these rolled out across the country and reach more people”.
All surplus food from Sainsfreeze will be donated to Sainsbury’s food redistribution charity partner FareShare, ensuring that no food goes to waste.