Vegetarians attack Tesco energy scheme

Tesco has come under attack from vegetarians for sending waste meat to be converted into renewable energy for British homes.

The retailer has proudly revealed that it is recycling all of its meat waste to heat and electricity, stating that the 5,000 tonnes of out-of-date meat that it sends to biomass plants will generate 2,500 Mega Watt Hours of renewable energy each year – enough to power more than 600 homes for a year.

However, the Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (Viva) has branded the scheme as “macabre”, claiming that many consumers would be “horrified” to discover that their power was created from meat.

Viva campaign manager Justin Kerswell said that the supermarket would not need to recycle the waste meat if they did not over-order in the first place and described the scheme as a “sickening plaster solution”.

Tesco has defended the scheme, pointing out that meat is only a small proportion of the waste that is being turned into energy. The retailer is now diverting 100% of the waste produced by its entire UK business away from landfill in a bid to improve its environmental performance.

Tesco executive director Lucy Neville-Rolfe said: “Climate change is the biggest challenge facing us today and businesses such as Tesco have a responsibility to provide leadership.

“Tesco understands the value of developing new technology, which is why we helped launch the Sustainable Consumption Institute with a grant of £25m last year. As well as research and development, improving our own operations and helping customers to make easy, green choices are the best way to combat climate change.”