Every year, food waste costs the UK hospitality and food service sector an estimated £2.5 billion. That’s equivalent to 1.3 billion meals. From fast food restaurants to fine dining, from conference venues to corporate canteens, from pubs and hotels to large volume food processors, each has a role to play in the better management of food waste.
We believe ideally, within the hospitality industry the only food that should be disposed of as wastage should be returned meals, out-of-date food, or food that has been spoiled, for example during the cooking process or in the case of a fridge or freezer breakdown.
We recognise that in a commercial food production environment and in retail distribution centres, there will also be a certain degree of wastage.
This may be due to perfectly good food failing to meet supermarket standards in terms of quality, shape or sizing; it could be the need to reduce wastage when certain products are being made; over-production; or simply wrong labelling which means pallets of perfectly good food are turned away at the point of arrival.
Wherever the food waste comes from, what happens next is the question.
All too often food waste ends up in landfill, a process that, because of its weight, will incur heavy penalties in Landfill Tax charges and does nothing to help you attain the goal of zero waste to landfill. There is also the problem that as food waste biodegrades, it releases harmful greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, which contribute to climate change.
We believe there is no excuse to continue throwing food into landfill, especially when there is a much better solution – the segregation of food waste at source in kitchens and production facilities.
Our dedicated food waste collection service is especially designed for the hospitality and food processing industries. It is used by a large number of our customers, who can vouch for our track record and their success in cutting costs.
Put simply, we take the hassle of food waste away, we have a specialist range of bins and we offer advice, training and clear signage to help your employees understand the best approach.
And, because we work so closely with customers across the food service industry, we know that space back-of-house can be a real challenge.
We provide kitchen food waste caddies – a bigger version of the ones many of us use at home – and our 120 litre food waste bins are designed to fit under-the-counter in the kitchen and food preparation areas.
With clip down, non-spill lids, they don’t need liners or bags as they have rounded bottoms for easy cleaning and maintaining hygiene.
They are secure to eliminate access to pests (e.g. rodents and flies), and their lightweight design reduces the potential risk of manual handling injuries and makes them easy to manoeuvre.
We also know that kitchen bins can hide a multitude of sins in food waste terms, so we weigh your bins at the point of collection, enabling us to provide detailed reporting statistics. These can help you identify additional areas for savings, such as over-purchasing and poor stock control, or monitoring portion sizes. We’ve all been served giant portions of chips and the ubiquitous salad that seems to accompany everything from a sandwich to a steak, whether we want it or not.
In addition, our dedicated software means it is easy to monitor your food waste tonnage and track trends, for example, when you introduce seasonal specials or promotions, helping you to see if they are a hit or a miss with customers.
And when your bin is full, you can take advantage of our bin exchange service, so when we take it away, we’ll replace it with a fully-sanitised clean bin – all part of our seamless food waste service.
The solution for larger quantities of waste in a food production environment, or indeed a large venue such as a shopping centre with plenty of fast food outlets, is to supply a mobile food waste compactor.
This ensures that after the food waste is collected in the bins, it can be easily emptied into the compactors, which are 100% leak-proof. Because they can store larger amounts of food waste, the number of collections required will be reduced.
There is another advantage to our food waste recycling service and it is one which guarantees a big tick in the box for your green credentials. All the food waste we collect is sent to Anaerobic Digestion (AD) facilities, where naturally occurring organisms break it down to produce biogas, which is then converted into renewable electricity and fed into the National Grid; in addition to producing fertiliser which is used for agriculture and land regeneration
Our specialist food waste collection vehicles also avoid adding to your carbon footprint because they are all certified CarbonNeutral®, so we don’t add to your carbon footprint when we come to collect those bins.
Whether you are a gastro pub, a busy shopping centre, a food manufacturer or a large conference centre – spare a thought for how you dispose of your food waste today, and we can help you serve up success for tomorrow.
It’s simple, recycling your food waste will save you money both now and in the future; it will give you vital information to help with issues such as stock control; and it will add to your environmental credentials because you won’t be sending it to landfill.
Any establishment or catering facility which is involved in producing food – that includes processors, fast food outlets (including burger vans and fish and chip stalls), restaurants, pubs, hotels, conference venues, in-house canteens, event caterers, the list is endless.
Indeed, we supply mobile food waste compactors for larger facilities such as factories and also areas where there are high volumes of food waste. Depending on the type of food waste (wet or dry) we would look at the best available technology to provide the right solution.
No, and that’s because food is very heavy. Many establishments have to pay a premium because their general waste bins are too heavy and that is often due to unwanted or surplus food being thrown into those bins.
Taking food waste out will reduce the weight of those bins and therefore save you money. Separated food waste will always increase its value and so in the longer term it will be cheaper and more environmentally-friendly.
We take it to specialist Anaerobic Digestion (AD) facilities. AD is recognised as the Government’s preferred recycling treatment solution for food waste and, given that costs are approximately two thirds less than landfill or incineration, it is a cost-effective technology, as well as being a greener one.
At a practical level, once the food waste arrives at an AD facility it will be depackaged, macerated and then put into large sealed tanks, where the anaerobic digestion process takes place. This is a biological treatment process using bacteria to break down the food waste and because there is no oxygen present, the process produces biogas (methane and carbon dioxide) and a liquid fertiliser called digestate. The valuable organic fertiliser is used on local farmland while gas engines convert the biogas into electricity which is then fed to the National Grid.
We supply kitchen caddies for back-of-house and specially-designed 120 litre bins, which fit neatly under-the-counter in food preparation areas. These are perfectly suited to the job because they have rounded bottoms for easy cleaning, which means no liners or bin bags are required. Their clip-down sealed lids ensures no spillage and their lightweight design makes them easier to move around, reducing the potential for manual handling injuries.
Our food waste experts understand that it can be difficult to do things differently, but we find that with training, they soon understand the benefits and appreciate that they can play a role in helping to save money, which can only be good for the establishment overall. Typically, we will offer tips, advice and information and also pictures on different bins to make the new system easy to follow.
All types of food waste, with the exception of very large bones – small ones are fine. What we don’t want are items such as cutlery, paper napkins or packaging, which is why correct segregation is so important.
Because we weigh the bins at the point of collection, we can provide you with detailed statistics to help track the amount of food waste you are throwing away. By monitoring trends and analysing the information we give you, you should be able to see if, for example, some dishes result in higher amounts of waste or if there are other issues, such as poor stock control or if the portion sizes are too large. This provides valuable insight into how the kitchen is managed.
Absolutely, we agree a schedule which suits all our customers on an individual basis and we’re also mindful of the fact that the hospitality industry has seasonal peaks and troughs. We work closely with you to find out what works best for you and if that means extra collections around busy periods, then we are very happy to provide them.