The Start Of The Leftover Food Debate
A few years back, the government got involved in the question of what does the F&B industry do with leftover food. They wanted to find if there was any legal provision that could fix portion sizes in restaurants. While the aim to define a portion and create a standardised label for the entire nation was a laudable goal, it was not a solution. In India, food wastage happens at a higher rate on production and distribution levels.
The reason is the lack of poor infrastructure. In one year, more than 40,000 tonnes of food grains are wasted in the country because there are no cold storages. It means while food is transported from the farm to the market, it gets spoilt. All in all, the problem is massive. For a country like India, where more than 50% of the population has to struggle for two square meals a day, even a small wastage is horrendous.
Thankfully, the retail sector of the F&B industry has found some answers to it. When you look at catering services and restaurants, it becomes apparent that they utilise ingenious methods to not throwing leftover food in the garbage bin. Let’s discover some of the strategies they are employing.
What Do Cafes, Eateries, and Other Food Businesses Do With Leftovers?
• The most common tool to not throwing food is to reuse it. Business owners accept, with pride, that non-perishables and deep-fried items are reused the next day. At closing time, whatever is leftover is refrigerated and recycled when needed. This includes a few poultry items such as:
Like raw vegetables, if they are in the early stage of cooking, the refrigerator is the place they go.
• The second tactic that restaurants wield as part of sustainable practice is knowing exactly how much will be consumed in a day. With years of experience, most food businesses know how much food will be needed in a day. They grasp what footfall to expect on what day of the week so they pre-prepare only that much. As a result, 80 to 90% of it is finished by the end of the night.
• The third method of making sure that food is not wasted is to feed the staff members. This technique is mostly applied by catering services and hotels that set up a buffet. After the staff has been fed, the sweepers, parking personnel, and security guards are given the leftovers. Some businesses distribute the food to slum areas.
While half done food can be cooked to serve in the staff cafeteria, cooked food is generally distributed. Where the food goes varies from café to restaurant and hotels to caterings. For example, some sweet sellers send over the leftovers to orphanages while others give to the poor that surround temple areas. Here – https://www.webstaurantstore.com/article/140/how-to-reduce-waste-in-restaurants.html you may check out the ways to reduce food waste in your restaurant.
What More Can Be Done To Make The Industry Sustainable?
Any person who goes to sleep with a full stomach comes under minority. Those who can dine in a restaurant or order from a catering service are indeed blessed. They come within the top 4% of the world’s population. The rest go to sleep hungry. When hunger is the number one killer of the world, it behoves the F&B industry to take as many steps as possible to reduce food wastage and become more sustainable. Here are some more ideas to achieving this objective:
• Distribute every little morsel to those who can’t buy it.
• Link up with an NGO who collects the surplus and gives it to the needy.
• Find a food bank who gathers all excess food at the end of the day and provides it to those who require it.
• Employ a food controller. These are people who not only keep an eye on spoilage but also food wastage. They will help bring in more sustainable practices while reducing your overall cost!