Brits waste £4 billion a year on unfinished food when dining out

Brits waste £4 billion a year by not finishing their meals when dining out, according to new research by online marketplace company Groupon.

Eating out has become a significant part of British culture, the research shows, with 35 per cent of Brits dining out at least once a week. However, a further 35 per cent admit to not finishing their food when they last went out to eat. On average, the study suggests, Brits waste £80.21 every year on unfinished food when eating out, amounting to a whopping £4,042,219,569 in total.

When broken down, the research shows that 25-34-year-olds waste far above the average, with 54 per cent eating out at least once a week and wasting £276.52 on unfinished food every year. The issue is most acute in London, where the capital’s residents waste a huge £504.90 every year on unfinished food.

With eyes bigger than their stomach, the average Brit pays £4.41 on a meal (men spend slightly more than women, shelling out £26.56 against £22.66), with 23 per cent claiming ordering while hungry causes them to waste food, another 14 per cent believing that sharing dishes with friends leads to overordering.

In terms of the cuisines that see the most food wasted, curry is out in front with 23 per cent admitting to giving up on their lamb bhuna, while pizza and Chinese food come in behind, both with 18 per cent.

In order to tackle the concerns raised above, online marketplace company Groupon is launching its new doggy bag, the ‘Takeaway Tote’, in order to encourage diners to take their leftovers home with them. The bag is chic and discreet and retails at £7.99. The foldable doggy bag has recycled leather straps and contains a pizza pocket, hot and cold food containers, cutlery holders, a jar for condiments or cheeses and, crucially, a camel pack to bring back that last glass-worth of wine. The bag also comes with an air freshener to mask any conspicuous smells.