Tacking Food Waste: the first "Zero Waste" Restaurant and smart Apps

The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that one-third of food produced for human consumption – approximately 1.3 billion tons –  is lost or wasted globally each year. This quantity is equivalent to more than half of the world's annual crop of cereals and it would be enough food to feed as many as 2 billion people each year.

In the UK, it is estimated that 10 million tonnes of food and drink waste arises post-farm gate each year. Food waste has economic, environmental and social implications and impact. Economically, food waste represents a cost to households and local authorities. From an environmental view point, food waste impacts both at production level (resources) and at disposal (with production of greenhouse gas emissions). Finally, wastage of food raises social questions, when part of the population struggles with food shortages in the UK and abroad.

WRAP – the non-profit organization established in 2000 to promote sustainable waste management – estimates that, by weight, household food waste makes up 71% of the UK post-farm gate total, manufacturing 17%, the hospitality and food service 9% –  of which around 200,000 tonnes are produced each year by UK restaurants –  and retail 2%.

Given the above scenario, it comes as very positive news to see that there is a surge in the number of Apps developed to address the issue of food waste.

We list below the ones that we have found for you to try:

o   OLIO - https://olioex.com OLIO connects neighbours with each other and with local businesses so surplus food can be shared, not thrown away. This could be food nearing its sell-by date in local stores, spare home-grown vegetables, bread from your baker, or the groceries in your fridge when you go away. As for today, it has around 400,000 users and a bit more than 170,000 meals have been saved from going to waste.

o   TOO GOOD TO GO - http://share.toogoodtogo.com Too Good To Go fights food waste by giving stores a platform to sell their surplus food. They are currently active in 8 European countries: Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland and UK. In less than 2 years they have partnered with over 5,000 stores to fight food waste, 3 million people have downloaded the App, and over 2.5 million meals have been rescued.

o   KARMA - https://karma.life/en/ Launched in Stockholm in 2016 by four young entrepreneurs, Karma just landed in the UK offering users the chance to buy excellent food with a 50% discount. The list of partners signed up to date is certainly wide-ranging, encompassing (among others) the Michelin-starred Aquavit, Alan Yau’s last creation Yamabahce, the vegetarian chain Tibits, Detox Kitchen, various locations from both Aubaine and Hummus Bros, and the modern British Mayfair restaurant Magpie.

But if many entrepreneurs have chosen to tap into the Digital Realm to address food waste, Douglas McMaster decided to return to the “pre-industrial food system” and opened SILO, the first “zero waste” restaurant in Brighton. Its unique philosophy towards food revolves around using healthy ingredients in their whole form, making foods from scratch (e.g. flour), cutting out food miles, reusing wherever possible and eliminating waste.

To know more about SILO and Douglas McMaster watch the video: https://youtu.be/oWn4SjwSn3I

and http://www.silobrighton.com ; https://www.telegraph.co.uk/food-and-drink/restaurants/silo-brighton-review-designed-with-the-bin-in-mind-but-in-a-good/

To learn more about Food Waste:

http://www.fao.org/save-food/resources/keyfindings/en/ and

http://www.wrap.org.uk/food-waste-reduction; http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/all-sectors