FOOD WASTE FACTS

Each year, an estimated

1.3 billion tons of food goes to waste.

That’s about one-third of all food produced around the world. 

Food that is disposed of in landfill breaks down and releases methane, a greenhouse gas that is 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

In the UK, we throw away

10.2m tonnes of food waste each year, creating more than

20m tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

Currently,

20% of food bought by the UK hospitality business is wasted.

WHAT IS FOOD WASTE?

In the UK, 60% of the food and drink that is wasted, could be avoided. Food waste has serious environmental consequences, primarily due to greenhouse gas emissions and water usage, as well as links with social issues such as food poverty.  Currently, there is no universally accepted definition of “food waste”. However, a commonly used definition in the UK and the EU is: “any food, and inedible parts of food, removed from the food supply chain to be recovered or disposed of”. The waste can arise from different areas of the operation:

Spoilage:

Food that has to be thrown away due to exceeding the use-by date or damaged.

Preparation:

Food waste that generates from prepping - this food waste is usually avoidable.

Consumer Plate Waste:

Unedible food that generates from consumers plates.

Surplus:

This is edible food that generates from surplus to requirements. It translates in heavy financial losses and can be redistributed, if not prevented.

All the above areas can be easily tackled through prevention, which will help you anticipate financial losses. Although some food waste is unavoidable, our audits can help you identify areas for improvement, and give you tools to target, measure and prevent. 

FINANCIAL BENEFITS OF REDUCING FOOD WASTE

Save money, save the planet

In the wake of the war on plastics, food waste is fast gaining media attention for many of the same reasons. Taking action to reduce food waste at your business has a number of financial benefits.

FOOD WASTE = COSTS:  For any business, throwing away perfectly edible food has a financial knock-on effect. Studies have found that hotels and restaurants realise on average a 7:1 ROI when they invest in reducing food waste; by investing in reduction strategies at your business, you can also enjoy a positive ROI. 

IMPROVE OPERATIONAL EFFICIENCY: By putting in place food waste prevention strategies, businesses are able to improve their operational efficiency by identifying and tackling areas that are generating avoidable food waste. Additionally, implementing food waste streams, operational costs can be reduced (general waste is way more expensive than recycling). 

PREPARE FOR FUTURE LEGISLATION: The UK government has set a target to reduce food waste by 20% by 2025. Measuring food wastage and setting tangible reduction targets can not only help towards achieving this, but will also give you a competitive advantage, as investors look for more than just accountability from companies.

THE FOOD WASTE PROJECT

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