16:14 03 September 2010
Brits are throwing away almost 50 million litres of wine a year, according to a new survey.
The research by supermarket chain Asda, found that Britons are throwing away an equivalent of £470 million each year down the sink
The Down the Drain campaign by the Waste and Resources Action Programme found that perfectly good wine is being wasted as consumers are unsure how long open bottles will stay fresh for. While others simply pour too much out that doesn't get drunk, resulting in the sink receiving the tasty tipple instead.
As soon as you open a bottle of wine the liquid starts to react with the air, a process known as oxidisation. This can have a positive effect, like with the need to let red wine "breathe". However after a time the changes become less desirable, and will eventually turn to vinegar.
Steps to slow down this process include stoppers, vacuum pumps and gas pumps. For best results all wine (red or white) should be stored in the fridge.
Another alternative is boxed wine. However, traditionally those on offer have tended to represent the bottom end of the market and earned a stigma in turn.
In a step towards curbing the amount of perfectly good wine being discarded, Asda has launched its newly packaged range of wine cubes which sources top quality, award winning producers to produce its vino.
Boxed wine allows the liquid to stay fresh for up to four weeks after opening, in comparison with bottles where wine generally stays drinkable for a matter of days.
In a bid to dispel the old fashioned and slightly downmarket stigma attached to boxed wine, Asda has launched the contemporary, vibrant packaging in order to attract a new generation to the product, and ensure it is a must have kitchen accessory.
Household food waste prevention programme manager at WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme), Andrew Parry, said: "more than £12 billion worth of food and drink is thrown away every year in the UK, including more than £400 million worth of wine. WRAP welcomes the introduction of Asda's new Wine Cube, which will allow customers the choice of buying wine in a format that will last longer after opening, giving them the opportunity to consume the product rather than having to throw it away."
Master of wine at Asda, Philippa Carr, said of the launch: "The fact the wine is vacuum packed ensures it stays fresh for four weeks after the box has been opened. This means customers can open up one of our Wine Cubes safe in the knowledge that it will stay fresh for a month. A lot of wine is needlessly thrown away in this country as customers are often not sure how long wine stays fresh for. Our repackaged wine cubes are a step towards encouraging Brits to curb wine wastage."
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