Turning food waste into beer

Published August 7, 2017

Over a third of all food that is produced is either lost or wasted, both throughout the value chain and as consumer waste. One of the most frequently wasted foodstuffs is bread – in the UK alone, 44% of all the bread produced isn’t consumed. Food waste activist Tristram Stuart came up with an innovative way to combat the problem. He founded Toast ale, an award-winning craft beer brewed with surplus bread that would otherwise be thrown away by bakeries and supermarkets. In its first year, Toast ale saved 1.4 tons of bread and brewed 15,000 liters of beer in 17 brews.

Stuart took to the stage at this year’s EAT Stockholm Food Forum to present Toast ale and some of his global campaigns to reduce food waste, particularly in supply chains.

«My most recent innovation is about having a better party than those wasting the food.» Tristram Stuart

Tristram Stuart is an award-winning author, speaker, campaigner and expert on the environmental and social impacts of food waste. His books have been described as “a genuinely revelatory contribution to the history of human ideas” (The Times) and his TED talk has been watched over a million times. The environmental campaigning organization he founded, Feedback, has been leading a global movement against food waste, working with governments, businesses and civil society at a national and international level to catalyze change in social attitudes and demonstrate innovative solutions to tackle food waste. Its campaigns have expanded since 2009 and are now under five banners: Feeding the 5000, Gleaning Network, The Pig Idea, Stop Dumping, and the FSE Network.

Stuart is the founder of Toast Ale, a beer launched in the UK in 2016 that is made using fresh, surplus bread.