– Published on
April 13, 2022

6 tips on how to nudge your customers to help reduce food waste

Nudging is a tool for changing people's behaviour by making it easier to make certain choices. In this case nudging is about making it easy to make climate smart choices. You can do this by offering a climate smart standard alternative. For an online shop it could be having environmental shipping as standard. Or if you have a buffet, you can use smaller plates to nudge people into taking smaller portions. Here are a set of tips for food retailers on how to nudge your customers to help you reduce food waste.

Waste fridge

Gather your markdowns in one place. This makes it easy for customers to find the products. Many of our partner stores say that it also increases the chance that they buy more than one reduced item.

Make it attractive

Place the waste fridge in an attractive place in the store and keep it neat and tidy. You should decorate it with a green message. This allows you to communicate your sustainability work to your customers. An awesome fridge makes the customer feel like a food waste hero. Not just like a person looking for a bargain.

Stop promoting multi-offers

Research shows that multi-price offers increase consumers' food waste at home. In Norway several food chains have stopped using those kinds of discounts altogether. We want to help inspire that change in other countries as well. You can start by stopping multi-price offers on products with a short expiration date. Such as mozzarella and similar fresh products.

Reduce the price at the right time

Does your store reduce prices on items close to expiring? Great, that makes the customer more motivated to buy the items, despite the fact that it soon expires. But, make sure you reduce the price at the right time. So that the consumer has enough time to eat it before it’s too late. Otherwise your food waste just ends up in another trash can.

Inspire change

Inspire and support your customer to make the most out of every product. Provide tips on recipes and how to store the products properly so they last longer. Use your different channels of communication to reach them. Even after they leave your store. A lot of households cook food on a routine. You can inspire change, so they choose more sustainable products. And give tips on how they can use every single piece of the product instead of it becoming waste. You should communicate these things in your store. For example, a lot of people keep their cucumbers, tomatoes and bananas in the fridge. But these products prefer room temperature. Let them know!

Think outside the box

It’s hard to beat Stora Coop Visby, when it comes to outside the box thinking. They have implemented a whole range of solutions to make sure they can reach their goal: Zero food waste. Some of the things they do is making fertiliser out of expired fish and mouldy fruits for their own tomato farm. They sell food waste bags with very reduced prices. They’ve even managed to turn their waste into vodka with a local company Gotland Spirits. Markus Wahlgren and his team at Stora Coop Visby set the bar high!

Are you up for the challenge?

Ben Holden

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