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Sainsbury's pop-up, walk-in freezer shows British shoppers how to save food and money

Last week, Sainsbury's invited passersby to drop in and chill in its walk-in freezer in Shoreditch, London. Dubbed 'Sainsfreeze,' the British supermarket's pop-up concept store was stocked with fresh foods that were frozen to reduce waste.

All of the items on stock were free for visitors to take home. The larger takeaway? Learning how to save money and reduce food waste by putting household freezers to good use. In the pop-up shop and online, Sainsbury's points out that people can freeze plenty of items they may have never considered, including raw eggs, yogurt and milk.

The supermarket is also encouraging shoppers to freeze reduced-price food. Sainsbury's saw a 5% increase in sales of discounted, almost-out-of-date food in the last month, but just 16% of British consumers say they freeze those items, with 60% missing out on deep savings because they believe near-expiration foods need to be consumed the day they're purchased.

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A new survey by The Food Foundation found that 24% of UK parents have cut back on the quantity of food to afford essentials such as their energy bills. The cost of living crisis is hitting hard, and brands have a role in easing that pain and helping their customers survive. 

The immediate costs of groceries may be front of mind, but decreasing food waste also comes with environmental benefits. Ruth Cranston, Director of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability at Sainsbury's: "Around a third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted and it contributes a whopping 8-10% of greenhouse gas emissions globally each year. That is why we are launching Sainsfreeze. [...] Innovative freezing not only allows us to save food we would otherwise have thrown away, but also to buy reduced-priced food close to its use-by date, saving even more money on the weekly grocery bill."