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Weekly update w/c 14.09: Success of the Eat Out Tp Help Out scheme contributes to fall in inflation rate as hospitality trade body calls for more sector-specific recovery packages and Tesco joins forces with food waste sharing app Olio

In economic news, the fall in inflation rate in the UK (from 1% in July to 0.2% in August) has been partially attributed by the Office of National Statistics to lower prices in restaurants during August’s Eat Out To Help Out scheme. The scheme saw over 100 million discounted meals claimed over the month, at a a value of over £500 million.   

Meanwhile hospitality trade body, UKHospitality, has claimed that unless the government puts in place a sector-specific job protection scheme then up to 900,000 jobs could be lost in the sector.  100,000 hospitality jobs have already been lost, despite the sector making widespread use of the furlough scheme.  The trade body is asking for partial wage support for businesses that have re-opened, extended wage support for those who have to close in local lockdowns, alongside wider financial packages for those forced to close.

In retail, Tesco have partnered with food sharing app Olio to redistribute food that would otherwise have been wasted in-store.  The partnership, Olio’s first at a national scale in the retail sector, follows a six month trial and will now be rolled out to all 2,700 Tesco branches.

At a time when food insecurity among vulnerable groups in the UK has risen due to the pandemic (see our tracker theme dedicated to this) the retailer has said they want to “make sure that any surplus food is being managed, and people who need it have access to it. The results of our trial have allowed us to roll out the partnership in our commitment to make sure no good food goes to waste”

View our COVID-19 tracker in full.