Using food waste as pig feed

APPG on Agroecology Meeting

Tuesday October 15th, 10am – 11:30am

Committee Room 16, Palace of Westminster

Chair: Baroness Jenkin of Kennington


Huge quantities of food are wasted every year, with up to a third of global food produced ending up as landfill according to international reports. In the final instance this contributes to the fact that up to 1 billion people worldwide suffer from hunger and malnutrition. While there are various policies that could address reducing the amount of food waste in the first place, this meeting will look specifically at the potential for using the waste that does exist in an efficient and sustainable way.

The meeting will hear from several speakers on the ways in which food waste can be recycled by feeding it to pigs. Although food waste was a traditional source of pig feed historically, in recent decades it has been replaced by grains and protein crops, primarily wheat and soybeans. Following the foot and mouth disease outbreak in 2001, feeding food waste to pigs was banned, first in the UK and then in Europe as a whole.

The meeting will discuss whether this ban is still necessary and how food waste can safely be fed to pigs.


Tristram Stuart

Feeding the 5000/The Pig Idea


Tristram Stuart is the author of Waste: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal (2009) which revealed that Western countries waste up to half of their food, and that tackling this problem is one of the simplest ways of reducing pressure on the environment and on global food supplies. Tristram set up the Feeding the 5000 (www.feeding5k.org), the flagship event of a global food waste campaign where 5000 members of the public are given a free lunch using only ingredients that otherwise would have been wasted. His latest project is The Pig Idea, which is currently raising 8 pigs on Stepney City Farm using legally available food waste from a range of catering establishments.


Philip Lymbery

Chief Executive, Compassion In World Farming

PhilipPhilip Lymbery is the CEO of leading international farm welfare organisation, Compassion in World Farming and prominent commentator on the effects of industrial farming. Under his leadership, Compassion’s prestigious awards have included Observer Ethical Award for Campaigner of the Year and BBC Radio 4 Food and Farming awards for Best Campaigner and Educator. He is a life-long wildlife enthusiast and lives in rural Hampshire with his wife and step-son.



Peter Jones

Director of Ecolateral

PeterPeter T Jones was until May 2008 a Director of Biffa Waste Services Limited. He now operates as a freelance adviser in matters strategic relating to the waste, carbon and materials efficiency agenda. Peter retired as Chair of the DEFRA/DTI Resource Efficiency knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) in Summer 2009 but continues as a Board member of the reformed Resource Efficiency KTN. In 2003 he became a member of the DEFRA New Technologies Demonstrator Programme, their Data Advisory Panel, and the Sustainable Consumption and Production Taskforce (for which he Chaired a subcommittee looking at the issues around distributed energy systems in the UK which reported in 2008). He has given evidence to a range of Parliamentary Select Committees over the years on waste, sustainability, resource efficiency.

Simon Fairlie, Author of Meat: A Benign Extravagance

SimonSimon Fairlie worked for 20 years as an agricultural labourer, vineworker, shepherd, fisherman, builder and stonemason before being ensnared by the computer in 1990. He was a co-editor of The Ecologist magazine for four years, before joining a community farm in 1994 where he managed the cows, pigs and a working horse for ten years. He now runs Chapter 7, an organization that provides planning advice to smallholders and other low income people in the countryside. He is also editor of The Land magazine, and earns a living by selling scythes. He is the author of Low Impact Development: Planning and People in a Sustainable Countryside.

4 Responses to “2013-10-15”

  1. THIS IS A BRILLIANT IDEA. What better way to control our waste production than by using it in a productive and sustainable way.

  2. I am extremely pleased to see this subject being discussed. The current restrictions are draconian, unnecessary and shockingly wasteful. I am very much in support of using food waste for pig-feeding.

  3. Very interested in this matter and would like to know the outcome; also a scythe!

  4. I am the author of How To Feed Your Family For £5 A Day, last published August 2012.

    I am very much interested in dealing with the problem of food security, particularly in the UK, where already we have the worrying problem of growing hunger. If we do not deal with issues now, I fear in the future many in the UK will be facing starvation.

    Feeding the 5000/The Pig Idea are making people aware of the issue of food waste and what it means to our planet and its impact on food security. We need to talk about food, now.


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