Have you ever considered offering excess food at a reduced rate? Or introducing a day-dish made with remaining ingredients? Maybe you have thought about reducing the portions of your dishes, so that less food is returned to the kitchen. How consciously do you deal with food waste?
Although many catering companies and institutional kitchens now understand that they can make a significant contribution to combating food waste, unnecessary amounts of food still disappear in the trash can. Of all the discarded food, more than 15% comes from the catering industry, which seems relatively low, but worldwide it equals to over 143 million pounds (lbs.) of food every year. Fortunately, increasingly more companies within the hospitality industry are trying to reduce food waste. Below we share some inspiring initiatives in the battle against food waste.
Taste the Waste
Valentin Thurn has made one of the first films on the scale of food waste to raise awareness about the problem. Together with Taste the Waste, he has created a platform to show the world how much food is wasted. The platform offers opportunities for sharing videos, photos and texts with ideas about the fight against food waste. Also, check out this impressive video!
FoPo Food Powder is a nutritious powder made from unmarketable fruits and vegetables. The products are lyophilized (freeze-dried) to prevent food waste. The idea was conceived by students of Lund University in Sweden and the company is currently located in Bremen, Germany. Freeze drying is not a new technology, but a great way to make a virtue of necessity!
About 5 to 10% of all fruit and vegetables in the Netherlands are wasted because of their appearance (too thick, too slim, too crooked), while the taste and quality of the products are perfectly fine. Kromkommer (wordplay: krom is Dutch for "crooked" and komkommer means "cucumber") makes sure that these products are consumed. Among other products, they have a line of soups made from vegetables that didn’t meet the standard. Because these products do not reach the supply chain, they are taken directly from the farmers.
The following initiatives are in no way connected to food safety, correct storage temperatures, allergen coding and such, but we find them too inspiring to not share them with you:
- In Utrecht (NL), a refrigerator has been placed behind a store for people to put in excess food. Whoever needs food, can simply retrieve it from the fridge. The initiative started as an experiment, but because of its great success, the refrigerator is now permanently outside.
- The Brazilian collective Makers Society has designed a special "Street Dish" sticker. Anyone who wants to leave a bag of excess food, places a sticker on it and hangs it at the side of a container. People who need it, recognize the food by means of the special sticker and do not have to dive into a bin to get food.
Almost half of all food wastage takes place at home. Think about what would happen if organisations encourage their employees to also take measures in their personal lives! People who are aware of their own food wastage will be more motivated to take action at work. Therefore it’s important to encourage a change of behaviour within your entire staff and also, to lead by example.
Source: tastethewaste.com / myfopo.com / kromkommer.com / hetkanwel.net