WRAP, the not-for-profit company with a vision for a world without waste, has announced that 68 leading UK hotels, pubs, restaurants, quick service restaurants (QSRs), contact caterers and industry bodies have signed up to the ‘Hospitality and Food Service Agreement’.
WRAP are acting on behalf of the UK, Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish governments to launch the agreement; that aims to cut food and associated packaging waste by five per cent (a CO2e reduction of 234,000 tonnes – the equivalent of 100 million meals) and increase the overall rate of food and packaging waste that is being recycled, sent to AD or composted to 70 per cent (a CO2e reduction of 336,000 tonnes).
Research from WRAP shows that signatories can together expect to achieve great cost savings and shows that if 25 per cent of the sector were to sign up, they could expect to save up to £76 million by the end of 2015 and reduce their CO2 (e) impact by 570,000 tonnes.
Companies already signed up to the agreement include Compass, Domino’s Pizza, Greene King, Greggs, McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd and Unilever Food Solutions.
CEO of WRAP Dr Liz Goodwin said: “Tackling food waste brings significant financial and environmental benefits, as already demonstrated through our work on household food waste and within the Courtauld Commitment. I am therefore delighted that so many organisations have signed up already to the Hospitality and Food Service Agreement, and we continue to urge businesses, large and small, to sign up.”
WRAP will provide businesses with support to equip them to make changes through online tools, workshops, working groups and expert advice.
Organisations signing up to the agreement do so voluntarily and either join as signatories or supporters, depending on their role within the sector. Of the 68 organisations signed up at present 27 are signatories and 41 are supporters.
Defra minister for the environment Lord Taylor said: “This new agreement shows these household names are committed to stopping this terrible waste of food. By taking additional steps to reduce the amount of food waste these businesses and organisations will stop the equivalent of 100 million wasted meals going to the bin and save themselves money – a win-win for everyone.”
Richard Lochhead, environment secretary for Scotland, added: “We have made huge strides to tackle household food and packaging waste in Scotland. We are now looking at ways to reduce waste that is created away from home, in restaurants, fast food chains and the catering industry. Of course, businesses will need help to do this and the Scottish Government is committed to providing that through our Zero Waste Scotland programme.”
British Hospitality Association chief executive Ufi Ibrahim remarked: “The hospitality industry and its supply chain has already made significant progress in improving its environmental performance and we are pleased to be working with DEFRA, the Devolved Administrations and WRAP [WRAP Cymru& Zero Waste Scotland] on this long-term journey to increase waste prevention and recycling rates, helping to save 570,000 tonnes of CO2e over the life of the agreement.”
Image: Dr Liz Goodwin, CEO of WRAP (Image courtesy of WRAP)