Your Business is Food – Don’t Throw it Away
Food waste is costing our international economy up to $940 billion US a year with 170,000 tonnes of food waste ending up in NSW landfill alone each year.
Globally, a third of all food produced is wasted. The cost of food waste to business alone goes way beyond disposal, adding up from the lost expenditure on the food itself, to wasted staff time in managing and preparing it, to customer dissatisfaction over large portion sizes or guilt at wasting money.
Food waste has a significant cost to our environment. It wastes the resources it used to grow, as well as the transport and process of the food, and when it ends up in landfill it generates methane gas which is ranked amongst the worst of all the greenhouse gases.
Much of this waste is avoidable and Love Food Hate Waste’s ‘Your Business is Food’ program uses simple steps to reduce food waste.
It starts by separating and measuring food waste over three or five days in three buckets or bins.
One bin captures preparation waste, one captures spoilage waste and one captures plate waste from customers. The results are then compared against the industry average. If you have more waste in any of the three areas, you have the opportunity to reduce your food waste and your business costs.
If you find plate waste is where most food is wasted, the program recommends simple things like offering smaller portion sizes, reducing garnish or offering customers a take way container to enjoy the leftovers later.
Our studies prove 71 per cent of customers say they like it if a restaurant offers a doggy bag or takeaway container. They get to enjoy the food later, talk about it with whoever sees them eating it and they feel good about the restaurant. It’s a positive for everyone!
In the trials of the program, customers felt good about the restaurants trying to reduce food waste. They also showed improvements in staff morale and levels of engagement. Those who sign up to the ‘Your Business is Food’ program receive stickers for take away containers that highlight food safety tips, and coasters, posters and an action guide.
Top 5 food waste avoidance actions for food businesses:
1. Order meat and fish cut to size – save time as well
2. Offer portion size options – giving customers room for dessert
3. Buy local and seasonal – it lasts longer and is usually cheaper
4. Offer chef or lunch specials to use up excess ingredients
5. Offer takeaway containers for customers to enjoy your food later
Love Food Hate Waste NSW aims to teach households and businesses simple actions they can do to reduce the amount of food waste created. This includes actions such as planning meals, shopping to a list, checking what items you already have, considering portion size, storing food correctly and using leftovers.
To help deliver the program, we work with a range of partners including councils, community groups and not for profit organisations who run Love Food Hate Waste activities in their region.
For more information about the program and how you can sign up, go to www.lovefoodhatewaste.nsw.gov.au/business
Love Food Hate Waste website: https://www.lovefoodhatewaste.nsw.gov.au/
Love Food hate Waste Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LoveFoodHateWasteNSW/