How to minimise wastage in foodservice

Food waste and sustainability are words that are increasingly on consumers’ lips. Research shows that there is a growing awareness of the damage food waste does to the environment – food that lands in landfill rots releasing the powerful greenhouse gas methane. Consumers are also becoming more engaged around the concepts of the need to re-distribute or re-purpose waste food. While it is not every customer or even staff member who cares deeply about food waste, they know how to make their opinion heard and felt. The festive season is a particularly bad time of the year for food waste. Research by RMIT shows that around 40% of food purchased by restaurants, cafes, pubs and other food services during the festive season ends up in the bin.

Monitor stock control

Some of this is due to poor stock control. This is a problem fixed with better stock rotation, and better storage systems. Some of it occurs in the kitchen where meat and vegetable trims are sent to the bin before their value is extracted either in stocks, other dishes or staff meals. A lot of festive wastage occurs through our innate generous nature of being hospitality professionals and simply feeding people too much. While a plate or share platter laden with food might give a wow factor when presented, expecting guests to plough through a larger than normal portion size is not showing the guest respect. Bounty and festivity can be obtained through choices of theming, threshold decorations, table adornments, Instagrammable static festive displays, table giveaways, strategic discounts vouchers on later purchases. These are things that have a relatively low cost, but do offer high value to customers.

Less plastic, more compostable

To further green the dining room and the sales counter during the festive season and ongoing is to consider compostable food packaging. Modern technology has allowed the development of safe, hygienic, durable and waterproof food packaging that composts into nutrients suitable for use in farms and gardens. The BioPak range is made from plants, not oil. Their cutlery is made from FSC™ certified Birchwood, the containers are made from sugarcane bagasse – the fibre left over after the sugar has been squeezed out. And the waterproof lining is made from PLA or polylactic acetate made from fermented plant starch. It behaves like plastic but is compostable like the plants it was made from. The entire BioPak range is carbon neutral and 5% of profits are channelled to environmental restoration programs in Australia and New Zealand.

Make the switch using Biopak's range

When it comes to the festive season (and if your food safety plan allows it), the BioPak range has sustainable containers to allow guests to take home leftovers. There are clamshell containers made from sugarcane or PLA-lined BioBowls made from sustainable timber-sourced paper. The range also has compostable bioplastic bags and attractive flat handled paper bags that are both recyclable and compostable for takeaway foods.

With social distancing still a major part of our daily lives, outdoor catering looks set to be a big way some will be running functions this summer. Sustainable multi-compartment BioCane takeaways are perfect to present multi-component dishes for one person in a smart, attractive and 100% compostable format. No cleaning after clearing – straight into the green bin. This includes the range of compostable FSC™ certified wood cutlery and compostable PLA plastic cutlery.

With takeaway food on the increase as some businesses hedge their bets, the pushback on non-sustainable packaging is turning customers off some businesses. The BioPak range offers everything from sustainable heat resistant clamshells for burgers to sushi boxes with compostable BioCane bases with compostable bioplastic lids.

Being green doesn't cost the earth

The prices of sustainable food packaging are comparable to single-use plastic containers, cutlery and packaging, some of which is rapidly being banned in states across the nation. While we are all doing our bit to get together and have fun this festive season, why not do our bit to reduce food waste and reduce single-use plastic.

Shop Biopak’s range of products on myBidfood.

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Explore Biopak’s range of eco-friendly packaging. Perfect for any takeaway offering.