Smarter way to manage food waste
Food is too valuable to rot in the rubbish tip. Learn the sustainable solution for proper food waste management.
One third of the food produced in the world is wasted each year. Over 7 million tonnes of food ends up in landfill in Australia alone! The economic cost is estimated at more than $20 billion per year. This article shows how restaurants and catering outlets are making good use of valuable food waste.
Eating is a vital necessity and eating is fun! However, a brief look at the statistics shows that industrialized and developing countries are particularly wasteful when it comes to food. The Australian Government says food waste costs our economy around $20 billion each year. According to Foodbank, Australia’s largest hunger relief charity, Australian households throw away 2.5 million tonnes of edible food each year – that is nearly 300 kilograms per person!
The hospitality industry is also guilty of generating massive amount of food waste. Studies reveal that in restaurants, 65% of food is lost in preparation, 30% of food waste comes from customer food leftover, and 5% is thrown because of food spoilage. Wasting so much food is an alarming thought knowing the amount of energy and resources used from farming to processing and logistics is thrown in to landfill alongside everything else.
In Australia alone, food waste is responsible for 15 million tonnes of CO₂ equivalent emissions every year. That is more than five per cent of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions which contributes to global warming and climate change.
Food is too valuable simply to end up rotting in the rubbish tip. The energy content of food that is not consumed is valuable and must be put to good use. Not only is it ecologically and morally repugnant, but food waste doesn't make any sense from an economical perspective either. Because any place that throws food away is making a loss. At home, in the retail trade, in food courts, restaurants, cafes, hotels – throughout the entire food and beverage sector.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, food waste refers to the discarding or alternative (non-food) use of food that is safe and nutritious for human consumption. The following is common practice in the food service industry:
Fresh produce that deviates from what its "normal" shape, size and colour is often rejected in commercial kitchens.
Food that is at or beyond its “best-before” date is discarded.
Large quantities of wholesome edible food are unused and discarded from catering outlets such as restaurants and cafes.
Did you know that the cost of food for preparing meals is the second-largest item of expenditure for restaurants and catering outlets? So why shouldn't we have sufficient reasons to implement proper waste recycling in restaurants and reduce the cost of food waste?
Each link in the food chain must help to minimize food waste. MEIKO has set itself the goal of becoming a pioneer for change. The company offers a recycling system for kitchen waste and leftovers consisting of vacuum or pump systems, digester solutions, dewatering systems, input stations for all volume and space requirements, tank solutions in all imaginable customised versions, and open disposal systems systems without storage tank.
And that's not all. The system has proved itself in terms of economics, ecology, and organisation. Grand Hyatt Singapore, with a team under the leadership of Executive Chef Lucas Glanville, used the system to "convert a mountain of food waste from landfill waste into garden fertilizer". According to Executive Chef Lucas Glanville: "The new system means that we no longer need to transport food waste manually through the hotel.
Dishwasher technology with built-in sustainability
Above all, this is good in terms of hygiene, as there are fewer containers, and mainly fewer roller containers. Consequently, the damage that these caused behind the hotel has been significantly reduced. The system has made our employees much more productive – for example, we don't need to spend so much time disinfecting the roller containers any more."
With the solution…
- leftovers and kitchen waste are crushed on the spot with the BioMaster infeed station.
- the unhygienic handling of food is avoided.
- food waste is intelligently treated and converted into biogas.
- waste pulp becomes pathogen-free, organic fertilizer.
- the use of rubbish bags is significantly reduced.
Food is not dealt with well in the F&B sector. It's a fact that we simply can't ignore. When food is wasted, money and valuable resources are also wasted. However, there are ways you can change day-to-day food and catering activities and reduce waste. A smart system for recycling food waste in restaurant kitchens is a step in the right direction.
Get more information on MEIKO's system for recycling food waste.