Air fryers, microwaves and slow cookers revealed as the most energy efficient ways of cooking as part of ‘Shop Smart, Cook Savvy’
Households reliant on oven cooking could save up to £604 per year by switching to a more energy efficient cooking method, according to new research by energy supplier Utilita. Joining together with frozen food specialist Iceland, the pair are embarking on a first of its kind partnership, that aims to help those struggling with the rising cost of living, by offering practical solutions and advice on how to save money.
As the UK anticipates one of the most expensive winters in its history, Utilita and Iceland’s ‘Shop Smart, Cook Savvy’ collaboration has launched to help families better understand the cost of cooking, and to help identify the most economical cooking methods available to them to make budgets stretch further.
As part of the joint campaign, both brands have committed to 11 pro-consumer, pro-planet pledges in total, which includes a massive overhaul of Iceland’s own-product packaging to reflect more energy efficient cooking appliances and methods.
Changing Cooking Behaviour
The research presents the cost to cook, per minute for each of the main types of cooking appliance. More than half of UK households admitted to not knowing which of their cooking appliances cost more to run (52%).
Utilita’s in-depth research presents a list of the main seven types of cooking appliances, starting with the most energy intensive – the electric cooker – and finishing up with the most economical to run – the microwave. In anticipation of the list becoming every household’s go-to cooking calculator, the research has been based on the energy consumption of 92 appliances across 24 sources, including academic research, legislation, and data collected from popular shopping websites.
The ‘Shop Smart, Cook Savvy’ research reveals how the cost of cooking can be cut by up to 60-90%, enabling households to save hundreds of pounds each year. The research also highlights the wider environmental impact of households’ cooking behaviours, revealing that oven default households could avoid generating the same amount of carbon emissions generated by driving 553 miles in the average car.
The table below shows the cost of using each appliance for the average daily amount of time, and the amount of carbon generated by each appliance per year.
|APPLIANCE||COST PER DAY TO RUN||COST PER WEEK TO RUN||COST PER MONTH TO RUN||COST PER YEAR TO RUN||CO₂e EMISSIONS (equivalent miles driven in avg car)|
|Dual cooker (part electric, part gas)||72p||£5.08||£22||£264.03||609|
Bill Bullen, Utilita Founder and CEO, said: “For as long as we can remember, our kitchens have been designed around the oven being the main cooking method, which isn’t the case for many households today. Much more economical cooking appliances such as air fryers, slow cookers and microwaves have become increasingly more popular. However the cooking instructions on food packets haven’t reflected this.
“Utilita and Iceland are closely aligned in our mission to help households make their money go further. There are so many factors that neither Richard or I can control today, but the cost of cooking is mutual ground that we can help consumers with. This unique partnership will hopefully urge other supermarkets to do the same and help consumers choose the most economical cooking methods.”
Richard Walker, Iceland’s Managing Director, said: “The cost of living crisis continues to be the biggest national issue facing consumers and as a private, family-run business, we’re constantly looking at both short, and long term initiatives that can offer any support.
Our ‘Shop Smart, Cook Savvy’ collaboration with Utilita is so important, as it shines a light on the relationship between what we buy and how much energy we use cooking it, helping to empower our customers and provide them with access to information that can help stretch their budgets further.”
Archie Lasseter, Utilita’s Sustainability Lead, comments: “The rising cost of energy is going to create seismic shifts in consumer behaviour associated with energy consumption through a new awareness of the cost to consume. The impact will be far greater than any of the Government’s green initiatives ever could have achieved.
“Although cooking is said to account for four percent of the average energy bill, the savings speak for themselves. It’s vital that consumers are given the facts they need in order to use less energy in the interest of the pocket and the planet.
“As experts in energy behaviour change, we know that consumers need to know in pounds and pence what their actions will save them, and we know that every household budgets differently, hence the daily, weekly and monthly cost savings set out in this campaign.”
David Buttress, Cost of Living Business Tsar comments on the campaign:
“This is the type of consumer awareness campaign that will stick in our minds, because it’s enabling every household to rethink the way we cook, which hasn’t been done before. We are delighted to list both Utilita and Iceland as official Help for Household partners for their efforts in enabling and assisting consumers to make impactful savings that will make a big difference, whilst reducing carbon emissions. I am hopeful that other supermarkets will follow suit to help their consumers identify the cheapest way to cook.”
|Cooking behaviour||Cost saving||Carbon saving (miles)|
|Use more energy efficient appliances
|Batch cook, when possible||£158||305|
|Use the right size pan with a lid||£72||139|
|Simmer rather than boil||£68||131|
|Don’t overfill the kettle||£19||36|
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