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Government Urge Professionals to Reduce Food Waste By 50%
Team Offbeat | 10 May

We check out the latest government strategy aimed at reducing food waste and how you, as a casual dining operator, can help.

Key Players in the hospitality sector have been called upon to pledge to reduce food waste by 50% over the next 12 years. The call comes from Food Surplus and Waste Champion Ben Elliot ahead of ‘Step up to the Plate’ symposium which he is due to host next week. Those attending the event will be asked to sign a pledge which aims to have 50% of the UK’s largest food businesses measuring, reporting and acting on food waste by 2019.

Ben Elliot says, “wasting food is an environmental, moral and financial scandal. We intend for the symposium and pledge to spark action, not just conversation, and inspire us all to champion change… it’s time to ‘Step up to the Plate’.”

So, as a casual dining operator, what can you do to help reduce food waste?

  1. Smaller Menus

It sounds obvious but menus with fewer ingredients will ultimately help cut wastage. Repurposing edible but otherwise discarded trimmings is also a great way to combat the issue. Get creative with your menu. Leftover ingredients such as lemon peel, kale stems and egg whites can be used as garnishes in cocktails or added to smoothies. Furthermore, utilise ‘imperfect’ produce. Purchasing visually imperfect or misshapen food will not only save food from going to landfill, it will also help you to maximise your cost savings.

  1. Food Waste Disposal

The correct disposal of surplus food is an important factor in the ongoing fight against food waste. If food ends up in landfill, it rots and releases methane – a greenhouse gas that is 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Handled correctly, inedible food can be processed and used for generating energy, agriculture, anaerobic digestion or animal feed. It’s all too easy to forget about the wider issue when throwing away surplus food, be mindful that you are responsibly and correctly disposing of all waste.

By Charlotte Phillips

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