Product Promotion Network

Fridges

UK households waste 7.3 million tonnes of food a year

Roughly 4.4m tonnes of the food wasted in the UK annually is avoidable, and 2m tonnes of this is as a result of food not being used in time. A third of this is because of confusion around the existing date labels, according to new research by sustainability organisation WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme). Many people are unsure about the difference between ‘use by’ and ‘best before’ labels and how to best store their food, which can lead to food being unnecessarily thrown away.

According to WRAP, its recommended changes to labels could help cut around 350,000 tonnes of food waste a year by 2025. It could also save shoppers around GBP1bn a year. Your fridge is also an important factor in keeping your food fresh – if it’s slow to chill, or doesn’t keep a constant temperature, your food won’t keep as long.

If your current fridge freezer isn’t up to scratch, find a model that will keep your food at its best for longer with our fridge freezer reviews[1].

‘Use by’, ‘best before’ and ‘display until’ labels explained

Generally, a ‘use by’ date is about safety. It’s found on food that could be harmful if eaten beyond this date, such as fresh meat, fresh fish and packed salads. ‘Best before’ dates, on the other hand, are about quality.

They’re found on longer-life food, such as cereals, bread and canned foods. While the food may not be at its best quality after this date, it’s not unsafe to eat. However, there have been some cases where a ‘use by’ date has been used, such as on hard cheeses and pasteurised juices, even though eating the food beyond the date is safe.

Under new guidance set out by WRAP, these products, as well as others where there is no safety issue, will now carry a ‘best before’ date instead. While ‘use by’ and ‘best before’ dates are required by law, ‘display until’ labels are not. They are often used by shops to help staff know when to keep food on the shelves until, and to rotate stock, so that food with imminent dates are stacked to the front.

New food labelling

To help clear up confusion, WRAP has recommended that manufacturers and retailers simplify date labels by getting rid of the ‘display until’ date.

In addition, it’s suggesting that people are given more time to consume a product once it has been opened. It’s also encouraging the use of the ‘snowflake’ symbol (above), to highlight which products can be frozen, alongside instructions on when to freeze. Lastly, a new ‘little blue fridge’ logo has been introduced to signpost which foods should be chilled, or when storing in the fridge is beneficial to prolonging a item’s life.

Follow our simple tips to keep your food fresher[2] for longer in your fridge freezer.

Food storage: what to do

Another major cause of food waste is food not being stored correctly. Storing food in the fridge can add an average of three days to its life and save households money by cutting waste. As well as following the correct advice on your food, it’s important that you keep your:

  • fridge temperature between 0?C and 5?C
  • your freezer between -18?C and -20?C.

Food should also be stored on the correct shelves.

For example, higher shelves in your fridge and shelves in the door will be a higher temperature than lower shelves. Therefore, it’s better to store:

  • fresh meat and fish on the lower shelf;
  • condiments on the top shelf;
  • dairy, leftovers and ready-to-eat foods in the middle.

As part of our thorough fridge freezer testing, we scrutinise the time each appliance takes to chill and freeze, as well as whether the thermostats are accurate. We’ve found that some appliances chill faster than others and are therefore better at keeping your food fresh and retaining nutrients, and others which do a poor job at cooling your food.

Find out which are the most impressive by taking a look at our Best Buy fridge freezer reviews[3].

References

  1. ^ fridge freezer reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  2. ^ keep your food fresher (www.which.co.uk)
  3. ^ Best Buy fridge freezer reviews (www.which.co.uk)

Smeg launches Dolce & Gabbana kettles and toasters

Smeg has launched the first wave of products from its Dolce & Gabbana-designed ‘Sicily Is My Love’ collection, including brightly painted kettles and toasters. The kettle, toaster and citrus juicer will be available in Harrods from today. They cost nearly ?400 each though, so if you want to get your hands on one you’ll need to dig deep.

This is the second time Smeg has teamed up with fashion brand Dolce & Gabbana for its ‘Made in Italy’ collections. The products celebrate the Italian heritage of both brands using traditional Sicilian motifs and the landscapes of Southern Italy as decoration. Find out more about the collection below, and check our reviews of Smeg kettles[1] and Smeg toasters[2] to see how they fare in our tough tests against cheaper rivals.

New Smeg Dolce & Gabbana products

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Smeg D&G TSF01 toaster, ?399.95

There are both two and four-slice toasters in the Smeg Dolce & Gabbana range, but you can only buy the two-slice version for now.

It features whimsical images of birds and sailing boats on a vibrant red background. The four-slice toaster, which has a different design, won’t be released until 2018.

Both toasters have six browning levels and cancel, defrost, reheat and bagel functions. They are also available in a range of plain colours, as part of Smeg’s Classic range, with prices starting from ?100.

We’ve tested both options, so check our toaster reviews[3] to see how these models compare, and whether you’ll get perfect toast with your ?400 toaster.

Smeg D&G KLF11 Kettle, ?399.95

This designer kettle is decorated with an intricate floral design with additional citrus fruit motifs. Like the toaster, it’s available to buy today for just under ?400 from Harrods. Of course, you’re paying for the design, rather than any fancy features, so don’t expect any extra such as multiple temperature options here.

If you like the look of the Smeg kettle, but can’t stomach the price – the older Smeg KLF01 kettle[4] costs around ?100 and is available in cream, mint, steel, black, light blue, pink and red. We’re testing the Classic version of KLF11 kettle at the moment, and will have results up in the next week, so it’s worth holding out and checking on our kettle reviews[5] to make sure this kettle is up to scratch before you splash out.

Smeg D&G Citrus Juicer, ?399.95

If you want your freshly-squeezed orange juice delivered in the most extravagant way possible, this is the juicer for you. It’s adorned with Sicilian landscapes and, appropriately, citrus fruits, on a bright red background.

We don’t currently test citrus presses, but we’ve found Best Buy fruit and veg juicers, some of which include citrus press attachments, from as little as ?40. If you’re just looking to get good juice fast, check out our juicer reviews[6].

The full range of Smeg Dolce & Gabbana gadgets

There’s no word yet on how much the rest of the D&G appliances will cost when they eventually hit shelves in 2018, but they are likely to be more expensive than the kettle, toaster and citrus juicer as the plain colour versions are. Find out more about the rest of the range below to see if it’s time to start saving up for your dream gadget.

Smeg D&G ECF01 coffee machine

Decorated with a traditional Sicilian symbol – the cart of Catania – and surrounded by a Baroque floral print, the D&G coffee machine is certainly a stylish route to your morning pick-me-up.

The original version of this machine, available in the classic Smeg range of colours, is available now. So, if you can’t bear to wait until next year then you can get brewing today, with prices starting from ?280. Check our review of the Smeg ECF01 coffee machine[7] to get our expert verdict on its coffee-making skills.

Smeg D&G SMF01 Stand Mixer

A brightly coloured stand mixer can be a real statement piece in your kitchen, and this Smeg D&G version is probably the boldest statement of all.

It’s covered in bold multi-coloured patterns and floral details, and has a generous 4.8-litre capacity which should be plenty for everyday baking tasks. It’s likely to be pricey, though not necessarily significantly more than the latest KitchenAid mixers. Check our stand mixer reviews[8] to find the most stylish options for your budget that also guarantee a good bake.

Smeg D&G BLF01 Blender

The designs on the Dolce & Gabbana edition of Smeg’s jug blender are an ode to the history of Italy, featuring images of temples, archaeological sites and landscapes.

The 800W blender has four speed settings and a 1.5-litre plastic jug. You can buy it now in the standard Smeg colours, including cream, mint, steel, black, light blue, pink and red. Prices start from ?149.

If you’d rather leave the art to your walls and just want a blender that makes brilliant smoothies, check our list of Best Buy blenders[9] to see which ones made the cut.

Smeg D&G SJF01 Slow Juicer

In 2018 you’ll also be able to get your hands on the D&G version of Smeg’s slow juicer. Its a masticating model, which means that it crushes fruit and veg gradually, squashing the juice out, rather than blitzing ingredients with a fast-spinning blade that flings the juice out, as centrifugal juicers do. This method is claimed to result in better quality juice, and more of it, although we haven’t always found that to be the case in our juicing tests.

For more advice see our guide to slow vs fast juicers[10]. The original version costs around ?449, so we’d expect the D&G version to cost significantly more. We’re currently testing this juicer, but for now you can get our first impressions in our Smeg SJF01 slow juicer first look review[11] and watch a video of this juicer in action.

Which? verdict on Smeg D&G appliances

There is no denying the unique style of this collection as well as the care and attention that has gone into creating the designs, but with a price tag of upwards of ?400 you’d be wise to check that the function and specifications are up to scratch before you buy.

If you want to jazz up your kitchen with some stylish gadgets, but don’t want to spend a small fortune, we’ve uncovered some brilliant cheap Best Buy kettles[12] and Best Buy toasters[13] in our tests, in a variety of patterns, styles and colours that will ensure your home looks great and your breakfast is cooked perfectly.

More designer appliances: Smeg D&G fridges

Smeg and Dolce and Gabbana first collaborated on a collection of 100 hand-painted fridges in 2016, which went on sale for an eye-watering ?30,000 each. Dolce & Gabbana worked with Sicilian artists including Salvatore Sapienza to create the detailed designs that, like the ‘Sicily Is My Love’ collection, were inspired by Italian traditions, colours and landscapes. Few people are willing to spend ?30,000 on a fridge, but you might be tempted by Smeg’s trademark retro-look fridges.

We’ve put these models through our rigorous lab tests to bring you impartial advice on whether they are a good buy.

Check our Smeg fridge reviews[14] to get our verdict.

References

  1. ^ Smeg kettles (www.which.co.uk)
  2. ^ Smeg toasters (www.which.co.uk)
  3. ^ toaster reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  4. ^ Smeg KLF01 kettle (www.which.co.uk)
  5. ^ kettle reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  6. ^ juicer reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  7. ^ Smeg ECF01 coffee machine (www.which.co.uk)
  8. ^ stand mixer reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  9. ^ Best Buy blenders (www.which.co.uk)
  10. ^ guide to slow vs fast juicers (www.which.co.uk)
  11. ^ Smeg SJF01 slow juicer first look review (www.which.co.uk)
  12. ^ Best Buy kettles (preview.internal.which.co.uk)
  13. ^ Best Buy toasters (preview.internal.which.co.uk)
  14. ^ Smeg fridge reviews (www.which.co.uk)