A purge on food waste at an independent school in Liphook is already reaping environmental rewards.

Highfield and Brookham School has cut meal waste by a fifth since it began a pupil-initiated crackdown in October, reducing the amount of food thrown away by an incredible 1,260kg and lowering its carbon footprint in the process.

This represents a drop of more than 20 per cent in fewer than four months.

Boards containing relevant facts and figures of Highfield and Brookham’s food waste reduction drive are produced each week so that pupils can see for themselves the positive impact their green initiative is having on the environment.

The drive began as pupils challenged the school’s catering department to produce a zero-waste meal per week, with excess food and ingredients repurposed for tasty and nutritious alternatives.

These have included using pork from a lunchtime roast in a healthy evening stir fry, turning ripe bananas which were left over from an inter-school cross-country event into smoothies and banana bread, using the flesh of carved Hallowe’en pumpkins for soup and the seeds for homemade bread, and turning soup into pasta sauce.

Suzannah Cryer, head of Highfield and Brookham School, said: “This is another great example of how, if we all work together, we can really make a difference. Reducing our weekly food waste by a fifth is a great start but we still have a very long way to go and we won’t rest on our laurels.”

Highfield and Brookham aims to be carbon neutral by 2030.