Make your pledge and
make a change.
The Food Waste Charter is a public commitment by companies and organisations in Ireland to fundamentally change how they think and respond to food waste. The signatories are pledging to take positive actions – through measuring; reducing; and reporting their food waste. For the first three years, we are asking all companies to commit to the monitoring and tracking of their food waste and report on progress and achievements.
By signing the Charter you:
Pledge your commitment to working together to reduce food waste
Measure quantity of food waste and associated cost within the business’s current operations
Identify appropriate interventions and implement one food waste reduction initiative over next 12 months
Report Individually on progress and achievements
Join us and make your pledge
Commercial Food Waste Research Report
This research project, which was carried out by the Clean Technology Centre (CIT) and funded by the EPA Research Programme, examined the main food waste producing commercial sectors in Ireland. With over 50 food waste surveys carried out in food service and food retail businesses, a series of sectoral food waste profiles, benchmarks and food waste cost factors were developed.download
Less Food Waste More Profit
This updated version of Less Food Waste, More Profit aims to inform people within the food service industry of the significant issue of food waste and the potential solutions. Originally published in 2010, it has been updated based on work conducted by the Clean Technology Centre (CIT) on the EPA funded research project ‘Reducing Commercial Food Waste in Ireland'.download
Food Waste in Hotels - Daily Service
The hotel sector is responsible for 53,000 tonnes of food waste, costing the sector an estimated €180 million per annum. Hotels have to balance the expectation that cooked food is always available to guests while also trying to keep waste and costs down. Not an easy task.download
Food Waste in Hotels - Functions
The hotel sector is responsible for 53,000 tonnes of food waste, costing the sector an estimated €180 million per annum. More often than not, function numbers are known, but balancing a good customer experience while keeping waste and costs down needs close attention. A good experience doesn’t have to mean lots of food waste.download
Food Waste in Full Service Restaurants
Restaurants (both quickservice and full-service) are responsible for 40,000 tonnes of food waste, costing the sector an estimated €115 million per annum. Reducing food waste is an excellent opportunity to improve gross profit and can be done without affecting customer experience.download
Food Waste in Canteens
Workplace canteens are responsible for 27,000 tonnes of food waste, costing the sector an estimated €95 million per annum. Tight margins and low price points in this sector make reducing food waste an excellent opportunity to improve gross profit. It is also an area worthy of CSR initiatives.download
Odile Le Bolloch, EPAdownload
Sarah Broderick, CTCdownload
Ireland’s Food Waste Charter is a national initiative led by the EPA supporting Irish businesses to reduce food waste. The Charter aims to promote a collective industry commitment to reduce food waste along the entire supply chain.
By signing up, you commit to take at least one action in your business that will help reduce food waste. This action, regardless of how big or small, should be concrete and achievable.
By doing this, you will join other businesses and industry leaders from across the country in working together to reduce food waste.
The EPA is supporting this initiative by developing free food waste prevention resources for businesses, helping to identify opportunities and providing support for the implementation of actions to address food waste.
Nobody likes to see food going to waste and people all over the world are coming together to create solutions to this problem.
Ireland, along with almost 200 other countries, has committed to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, including: “By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses.”
Recently published research revealed that the food services sector generates over 250,000 tonnes of food waste each year, with as much as 75% of this being food that could have been eaten. The purchasing costs alone of this wasted food is estimated at over €300 million for the Irish food service sector. Additionally, food waste in business results in considerable cost in terms of resource-use and business overheads.
Addressing this global issue is something that requires collective action. By signing up to the Charter you are joining with others to become part of the solution to wasted food – from farm and fishing boat; through processing, distribution and retail; to final consumption.
In turn, the EPA is supporting businesses to reduce their food waste by developing free food waste prevention resources for businesses, helping to identify opportunities and providing support for the implementation of actions to address food waste.
By signing up, your business commits to take at least one action that will help reduce food waste. This action, regardless of how big or small, should be concrete and achievable.
Signing the Food Waste Charter involves four main actions:
- Pledge – this is your businesses making a commitment to work together to reduce food waste
- Measure – quantify food waste generated within the business’ current operations
- Reduce – identify potential actions to reduce food waste and implement at least one over the coming 12 months
- Report – promote good news stories and achievements
Regardless of what kind of business or organisation you are involved with, there is always something that you can do to reduce food waste. After pledging to do something about food waste in your business, measuring where food is being wasted will help you to identify actions to reduce it.
Most food businesses have a brown bin service (and if you don’t then you should!) and the information from these bills can be used to measure food waste and benchmark against industry standards. However, these bills typically provide only very rough estimates as food still ends up going down the sink and/or in the wrong bins.
Detailed tracking of food waste is an important first step to really understanding how much is being wasted, what type of food is being wasted and from where that waste is coming.
To help you get started, you can download some resources to help you record and track your food waste here.
Every business and organisation is different so what works for one may not work for another. There are many excellent examples of how different Irish businesses have addressed their food waste and these may provide some inspiration for your business.
We have gathered some examples of food waste prevention in businesses and these can be found here
The first signatories were 5 major Irish retailers, representing 70% of Irish grocery retail market and these companies are now are working towards measuring, reporting and reducing their food waste. Since then other organisations from family run restaurants to international corporates have also joined. That’s the whole thing – any business can get involved regardless of whether you are food producer or just have a workplace canteen.