The UK's biggest supermarket is launching a campaign to tackle "breathtaking" amounts of food waste which it says costs households £700 a year.

Tesco will unveil its food waste strategy on Thursday when it is also expected to reveal chief executive Philip Clarke and 5,000 top managers missed out on bonuses last year after profits halved.


The retailer's new waste plan includes selling food in smaller sizes in its convenience stores, and tailoring promotions away from goods with shorter shelf lives.

Mr Clarke admitted it may mean customers buying less food from Tesco, but said the supermarket has a responsibility to tackle a "long-term risk to society".

He said in the Sunday Telegraph: "The volume of food wasted every year is simply breathtaking. In the UK, the average family wastes nearly £700 a year by throwing out food they don't eat. None of us can afford the current levels of waste to continue."

He said the rising global population - expected to hit 9 billion by 2020 - means the planet cannot continue wasting huge volumes of food while demand soars.

The supermarket's new Tesco and Society campaign will be published on Thursday alongside its annual report.

The retailer will make use-by codes on packaging clearer and give tips on how to use leftover food, as well as will tackling waste in-store, including at its bakeries, and encouraging suppliers to waste less through smarter forecasting of demand.

Mr Clarke said: "It may sound counter-intuitive for Tesco to help our customers reduce the amount of food they waste, because it is likely to involve reducing the volume of food they buy, and I understand some people might be sceptical hearing it from a supermarket chief executive.

"But the issue that we are trying to solve is a long-term risk to society. I want to use our scale and the reach that our customers have given us to serve our society in return."