This report is part 2 of a 3 part deep dive study into the Business Case for Reducing Food Loss and Waste. The first report was on the business case for reducing food loss and waste in hotels. At the request of business, these more focused studies evaluate the cost-benefit of reducing food loss and waste in particular sectors. This study looks at the catering sector.
We analyzed data of preconsumer waste from 86 catering sites, located
across 6 countries, and calculated the following results:
- The average benefit-cost ratio for food waste reduction was more than 6:1 over a three-year time frame
- Within the first year of implementing a food waste-reduction program, 64 percent of the sites recouped their investment.
- Within two years of implementing a program, 80 percent of the sites recouped their investment.
- By reducing food waste, the average site saved more than 5 cents on every dollar of cost of goods sold (COGS).
- There appears to be no clear correlation between benefit-cost ratios and a site’s geography.
- Key strategies for achieving food waste reduction were to measure the food waste, engage staff, start small, reduce food overproduction, and repurpose excess food.