FOOD WASTE INTELLIGENCE
Waste has emerged as one of the defining sustainability issues of our modern food system. Up to half the food produced globally is never consumed and in the UK 12m tons of food is thrown away annually, most of which is avoidable.
Foodservice and hospitality companies throw away 920,000 tons of food waste every year, about 13% of which is generated in the education sector.
This commitment to being part of the solution, for members and the Industry at large, has led to this important piece of research. Food waste is one of the biggest problems that the foodservice sector must tackle – we throw away 920,000 tons of food every year, of which 75% is avoidable; the numbers there speak for themselves.
Take a look at the TUCO and WRAP documents in the Documents section below for further information.
COURTAULD COMMITMENT 2025
TUCO were one of the founding signatories of The Courtauld Commitment 2025, which launched nationally on 15th March 2016.
The Courtauld Commitment 2025 is a world-leading ten-year voluntary agreement that brings together leading organisations from across the Foodservice Industry to tackle waste levels, greenhouse gas emissions and water intensity. All those involved will work collaboratively to reach the shared ambition of cutting the resources needed to provide food and drink in the UK by one-fifth in the next decade. TUCO are a business signatory to WRAP’s Courtauld 2025 commitment bringing together organisations across the food system from producer to consumer, to make food and drink production and consumption more sustainable. TUCO Category Managers attend the following steering groups.
- Fresh Produce - Jane Eve, Head of Contracts
- Waste – Mandy Johnston, Category Manager
- HaFS - Mandy Johnston, Category Manager
- Dairy – Hannah Myton-Wright, Category Manager
- Meat – Kim Ashley, Category Manager
- Wales – Jane Eve, Head of Contracts
- Scotland – TBA as the group hasn’t yet met
GUARDIANS OF GRUB
The Guardians of Grub campaign was developed by WRAP as part of its ambitious work to cut food waste from farm to fork. The striking new campaign was unveiled at a special symposium organised by the Government’s Food Surplus and Waste Champion Ben Elliot, and attended by senior business figures, the Secretary of State for the Environment Michael Gove, and some of the UK’s most well-known restaurateurs and chefs.
The Guardians of Grub campaign is aimed at empowering professionals from across the hospitality and food service sector to reduce the amount of food thrown away in their establishments. The campaign is aimed at everyone from Michelin star restaurants to local pubs and wherever food is served to order. It is about making simple, low-cost changes to the way food is bought, prepared and served that have waste reduction in mind.
Guardians of Grub has been developed to inspire action at every level of the hospitality and food service profession; from kitchen porter to business owner and across preparation and service. The theme of guardians helps stress the enormous environmental impact wasted food has on the planet, and makes the point that everyone has the power to defeat waste within their work. The sector itself is responsible for ten per cent (one million tonnes) of the total 10.2 million tonnes of food wasted in the UK each year, with the cost of avoidable food waste varying between 38p and £1 for every meal it serves.
The Guardians of Grub campaign is supported by a dedicated microsite packed with free materials that businesses can use to tackle food waste, focussing on common triggers for waste in the kitchen and plate waste. Research by WRAP found that on average 21% of food waste arises from spoilage, 45% occurring in food preparation and 34% from consumer plates. The campaign accompanies a dedicated Action Plan for the sector, published by WRAP earlier this year, which sets out specific milestones the sector needs to achieve to play its part in delivering on the UK’s part in the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 12.3 (to halve global food waste by 2025), and the UK Food Waste Reduction Roadmap. These include action to reduce food waste within preparation and service, and reducing consumer waste.
A new Guardians of Grub video touches on the many environmental impacts of food. These includes the enormous amount of resources, water, land, energy and time required to produce food, as well as methane gas produced through decomposing food waste disposed of in landfill. This gas is thirty-times more harmful on the environment than carbon dioxide, with United Nation Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimating that global food waste represents more greenhouse gas emissions than any country in the world, except for China and the United States. WRAP is engaged with senior influencers in the sector to help cascade the Guardians of Grub messages outwards to create a long-term industry movement. The organisation is calling on businesses to encourage their staff to get involved, and stimulate participation more widely to Target, Measure and Act to reduce food waste.
Visit the microsite here.
Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) are the UK government department responsible for safeguarding our natural environment, supporting our world-leading food and farming industry and sustaining a thriving rural economy. The DEFRA broad remit means they play a major role in people's day-to-day life, from the food they eat and the air they breathe, to the water they drink.
Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers. It supports the development of thriving farming and worker communities that have more control over their futures and protects the environment in which they live and work. Supporting Fairtrade is your opportunity to connect with the people who grow the produce that we all depend on.
A Fairtrade University or College is one that has made a commitment to supporting and using Fairtrade.