Small businesses in London have managed to save more than £100,000 a year and have also prevented 70 tonnes of food from going to landfill by simply reducing the amount of food wasted.
Fifteen companies have achieved savings of more than £6,000 in direct food costs annually through the FoodSave scheme supported by Mayor Boris Johnson. In addition two of the businesses are predicted to save more than £10,000 with another expected to save up to £24,000.
The scheme’s main target is to divert more than 1,000 tonnes of food waste from landfill and save businesses more than £350,000. Extension of the scheme has seen 200 more restaurants, pubs, hotels and canteens being invited to apply and be part of the free scheme.
According to the government waste advisory body WRAP, food waste is costing companies an average of £10,000 a year with the equivalent of more than 1.3 billion meals being wasted in the UK’s hospitality and food service sector every year.
Matthew Pencharz, the Mayor’s Environment Adviser said:
“With FoodSave cafes, pubs and restaurants are learning simple ways to reduce the amount of food they throw away and saving thousands of pounds in the process. The Mayor now wants hundreds more businesses to get on board this great free scheme and help us dramatically reduce food waste across the city.”
The project is funded by the Mayor of London, European Regional Development Fund and London Waste and Recycling Board and being delivered by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) and Sustain.
FoodSave is a project aiming to work with over 240 small and medium-sized food businesses (SMEs) in London with hopes of putting an end to food waste and also diverting surplus food so it can be used for good purposes.
FoodSave follows the principles of the Food Waste Hierarchy and is working with businesses to help reduce as much food waste as possible, before using remaining food to feed people in need and then using food not suitable for human consumption to feed livestock where legally permitted.
Image Credit: LONDON.GOV.UK
Where food waste cannot be avoided or redistributed, FoodSave is also backing composting and renewable energy generation where food waste is unavoidable, helping businesses avoid landfill.