Social media helps reduce the amount of trash at the curb in the UK

CRS    February 16, 2015

Organisation name: Love Food Hate Waste Campaign by WRAP
Industry: Not-for-profit
Name of contact: Dr. Liz Goodwin, CEO

Web references: Love Food Hate WasteWRAP, Twitter LFHW UK, You Tube,  West London LFHW Case StudyPodcast directory.


About Love Food Hate Waste

The Love Food Hate Waste campaign was developed in the UK by the non-profit organization WRAP.  According to WRAP, citizens in the United Kingdom throw away 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year. Alarmingly, much of this wasted food remains safe for human consumption. To support the WRAP mission “to accelerate the move to a sustainable resource-efficient economy”, the Love Food Hate Waste campaign effectively makes use of a variety of social media tools to reach into kitchens, into garbage cans, and onto shopping lists. The crux of the program revolves around teaching individuals to shop, plan, and cook efficiently to minimize waste and to save money—a message that resonates well with all members of the public. The campaign is promoted at local, regional, and national levels simultaneously.

Since the Love Food Hate Waste campaign combines the use of traditional media and advertising, a static website with interactive components, and locally-arranged events along with the use of social media–determining the impact of social media alone is impossible.  The campaign also makes use of celebrity endorsements to raise awareness.


Use of social media to promote business performance

The Love Food Hate Waste campaign has produced exceptional results. Over a five year period across the UK, household food waste reduced by 21%, food waste and food packaging waste was reduced by 1.7 million tonnes, and a global food waste tool was created. In addition to cost savings for individual householders who adhere to campaign recommendations, municipal waste collection savings are substantial. The West London LFHW Case Study reports a potential savings of £1.3 million overall


Twitter is used by campaign organizers, local event organizers, and LFHW supporters to promote events, share money-saving ideas, recipes, and meal plans.


You tube

Videos were created to increase awareness and interest and show interested parties how to plan their own events.



Interested participants can access audio clips that contain money-saving tips.



Love Food Hate Waste has a central facebook page to share updates and stories. Local groups have created pages for information specific to their group members.




Pinterest members create and share their own images in support of Love Food Hate Waste, as do Flickr and Tumblr followers.


Interactive aspects of the LFHW website

The LFHW website contains an interactive Everyday Portions Calculator to promote skill development in meal planning, cost reduction, and waste reduction.  In addition, the development of a Love Food Hate Waste app helps interested individuals plan meal preparation, shopping, and use of leftovers.



Lessons for others

  • Start with a message that resonates with the audience. In this case the message is “save money on your grocery bill.”
  • Social media can be used effectively to support local “live” events.
  • Encouraging participation through social media can allow a campaign to grow organically, can compound the impact of the original message, and can help the campaign take on a life of its own.
  • Remain open to new possibilities and partners. The creation of the LFHW app greatly expands the reach of this program.

Submitted By: Aileen MacMillan, SMBP student, University of Waterloo

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Programme Director, Social Media for Business Performance