Working with our supplier Country Crest to tackle food waste

Country Crest, the north Dublin based family owned agri-business, and Tesco Ireland have one of the longest relationships in the industry. Working together since Tesco entered the Irish market in 1997/98, Country Crest continues to grow and supply thousands of tonnes of potatoes, onions and sweet potatoes to Tesco stores twenty years later. On average, Country Crest supplies Tesco stores in Ireland with approximately 3,000 tonnes of Irish grown onions annually. 

In November 2017, Tesco Ireland and Country Crest, launched their first product as part of a new ‘Perfectly Imperfect’ fruit and veg range. The range takes out-of-spec or misshapen fruit or vegetables and offer them to customers to help prevent food waste on farms and in production.

The first product to market was Irish onions which had grown beyond normal specification due to the overly wet weather experienced in early autumn. Despite a good year of growing conditions, the spell of wet weather led to a delayed harvest with crop growth above normal specification for Irish onions. Due to the quick thinking of Country Crest and Tesco technical teams, almost 300 tonnes of perfectly good quality Irish onions were saved from composting or waste.

Country Crest

Commenting Tracey McDermott, Tesco Ireland, “At Tesco, we’ve no time for waste. From time to time across the year, customers will see our Perfectly Imperfect range that will contain vegetables that may have been wasted on farms but will now be on offer to our customers at lower prices.”

“These Irish onions are grown for Tesco by Country Crest, who have been supplier partners of Tesco for over 20 years. Grown with the same care and attention as with all Country Crest grown products, they are slightly off specification; the skin on some of the onions has been affected a little more than normal by autumn weather, although they remain perfect on the inside.“

“This is good news for our customers, good news for our suppliers and great news in the fight against food waste. This is our first our Perfectly Imperfect range to launch in Ireland and we’re proud of the work we’ve done in this area and we’re committed to doing more to help customers to buy great quality, healthy produce at affordable prices.”