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IKEA Vows To Curb Food Waste In Half Within The Next Three Years

By Nicole Caldwell

For a furniture chain that produces 43,000 metric tons of food waste every year, cutting that number in half is no small Swedish meatball. But that's exactly what IKEA has vowed to do. 

After a 2016 fiscal year that saw its food services turnover grow by 8 percent to $2.1 billion, the world’s number-one furniture retailer is looking to nip its food waste in the bud at the source. Back in December, IKEA started tracking exactly what food was thrown away, how much, and at what time of day. By calculating that data and adjusting the store’s output, the chain has already kept 79 tons of food out of the waste stream. Using this algorithm, IKEA claims it will cut its food waste in half by 2020.

Daily food waste at IKEA’s nearly 400 in-store, self-service outlets in the past has averaged around 660 pounds, according to IKEA spokesperson Ylva Magnusson. But all that’s apparently about to stop.