Seventy-two billion pounds of food are lost and 40% of the food produced is wasted each year in the U.S. These are staggering statistics. As inflationary pressures continue to rise, reducing waste is necessary to decrease the impact of inflation. Continuing our outline last month of Compass Group’s efforts to fight inflation on behalf of our customers, we’re addressing our multi-faceted mission to curtail waste in landfills by reducing food and non-food waste in all of our operations.
Our goal to reduce food waste by 50% by 2030 is consistent with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Loss and Waste 2030 Champions and aligns with the U.N.’s sustainable development goals. We are well on our way, with efforts deployed in our operations.
We reduce food waste by incorporating industrial technology, creating an environment that values making a difference, feeding hungry people and composting food into a reusable resource. Other efforts include introducing our clients to single-use packaging alternatives, more sustainable offerings and circular economy solutions. Lastly, education and engagement encourage continued waste reduction at home and throughout the community.
Technology in the Kitchen
Waste Not™ 2.0 is Compass Group’s proprietary, tablet-based, waste-tracking program designed to change behavior with real-time tracking and dashboard reporting. Built by chefs for chefs, Waste Not™ 2.0’s easy-to-use interface creates a positive impact by focusing on avoidable waste-reduction opportunities beyond trim, bones, cores and peels.
Dynamic data analytics we share with our clients enables us to pinpoint where the majority of waste comes from and why. This detailed level of awareness allows sites to be more efficient in their processes, prevent overproduction and additional costs, as well as reduce the amount of unused inventory to divert food waste from landfills.
Making a Difference Through Kitchen Food Waste
Compass Group developed Imperfectly Delicious Produce (IDP) in 2015, a program which rescues produce that is safe to eat, but for cosmetic reasons, doesn’t make it to market and often gets sent to landfills. With it, we’ve saved over 11 million pounds of produce through participating accounts.
We pride ourselves on reducing food waste at the source, but when there is an excess of food that’s safe to eat, we work closely with our partners to ensure that good food gets into the hands of those who need it most. We believe that food recovery is the right thing to do and can positively impact the health of our communities.
From high-tech composters that convert approved food waste into liquid waste that is environmentally safe for disposal, to full-circle composting that benefits local farms, Compass Group continues to find creative ways to use every ounce of food waste that comes through our kitchens.
Compass Group is committed to doing our part to reduce single-use plastics across the business and was the first foodservice company to eliminate plastic straws. We provide alternative packaging solutions and marketing materials that help guests make educated decisions about smaller-sized containers, controlling both portion size and post-consumer waste.
To-go containers are often necessary, so we partner with the industry’s most recognized manufacturers to deliver a comprehensive disposables portfolio that includes earth-friendly, sustainable options.
Education and Engagement
Compass Group strives to educate and ignite change in the fight against waste. By raising consumers’ awareness, we increase their understanding of how much food is wasted and how they can reduce waste at work, in the community and at home.
In 2016, Compass Group created an annual international day of action during the last week of April, Stop Food Waste Day (SFWD), to share solutions in our cafés and across social media about the environmental, social and financial impact of food waste, as well provide tips on ways to reduce food waste at home.
Our Stop Food Waste Day Cookbook, Stop Food Waste truck, and employee engagement on our social media channels educate and encourage our guests and clients to think about how they can prevent food waste in every facet of their lives.
Helping Clients Reduce Waste and Costs
By keeping our waste-reducing strategies current, we stay cost-efficient and help our clients control waste to mitigate inflation and benefit the environment. Together, we engage our guests to have fun with food, while learning how to take care of their health and our planet.
Interested in how we can help you reduce food waste and costs? Let’s talk about it.