Why Sustainability in Foodservice?
Sustainable practices are on the rise in the foodservice industry, driven by concerns around workers’ rights, sustainable sourcing/animal welfare, and waste reduction. Going green is not just a catch-phrase, but an essential part of doing business. It’s no longer enough to provide food, but to implement measures that reduce the environmental impact of providing that food.
Why does Foodbuy implement a sustainable business model? Sustainability supports local economies, drives sustainable sourcing practices, and promotes responsible waste reduction.
Support of Local Economies and Workers
One step foodservice operations can take to increase sustainability is to buy local. Not only does this help those close to your business, but also reduces the environmental impact of transportation needed to widely distribute food.
Foodbuy and Compass Group were some of the first organizations to support the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, established to protect the rights of migrant workers. Foodbuy also supports buying locally produced products from small business owners as a way to strengthen local economies. Foodbuy strives to work with suppliers who implement fair trade practices – ensuring that workers are given a fair price for products.
Offering sustainably-sourced food could mean the difference on where your customers decide to dine. Sixty percent of consumers say availability of environmentally friendly food would make them choose one restaurant over another.1 Your sustainable sourcing initiatives should include items like driving the use of reduced antibiotic poultry, partnering with Seafood Watch for sustainable seafood, and mandating cage-free eggs and rBGH-free milk.
Zero-waste cooking, which transforms food scraps, damaged produce and leftovers into usable menu items, ranks third on the list of overall culinary trends for 2019.2 Foodbuy supports waste reduction with the support of the Imperfectly Delicious Produce program – using cuts and pieces of vegetables that would otherwise not be used. It’s been found that kitchen waste reduction in foodservice can reduce operation costs by 30 percent.3 Foodbuy also sources compostable, recyclable, and reusable packaging. Composting and recycling are two ways of disposing of products that diverts waste from a landfill, reducing the impact that landfills have on the environment.
In the end, everyone needs to eat. And we all have a say in making the act of eating more sustainable. Foodbuy’s sustainability story reflects not only what is possible within the foodservice industry, but why it is essential.