The restaurant industry has some reckoning to do when it comes to food waste. Did you know that one restaurant can produce as much as 25,000 to 75,000 pounds of food waste in just one year? Meanwhile, about 84.3 percent of unused food in American restaurants is thrown in the trash, while 14.3 percent is recycled and a mere 1.4 percent is donated.
But here’s the good news: There are many ways you can feel good about helping save the planet while at the same time helping your own business – and we mean saving money. Here are just a few examples of actionable measures your restaurant can take.
Know What You Have and What You Don’t
Keep a meticulous list of what food items you already have and what you need and must buy. Don’t guess. Double buying is sure to waste both money and ingredients you otherwise could have used.
Beware of the Bulk
Don’t get overexcited about ordering perishable supplies in bulk for your establishment. It’s the restaurant version of going to the grocery store when you’re starving. Track how fast your ingredients fly off the shelves and compare that to their expiration dates to determine how often to shop for various items.
Conclusion – Challenge Your Standards
Want to earn some good karma while boosting your image with customers? Set up a program with a local homeless shelter or another program that could use your leftover food supplies. Some good places to start are with the app Goodr which delivers leftover food to the hungry, and programs like the non-profit Rescuing Leftover Cuisine. And make sure you let your customers know they are supporting a business that cares.
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