Recent statistics show that Australia's restaurant industry grew by about 1.7% annually between 2014 and 2019. While this is excellent news for the country, the proliferation of restaurants has brought with it a significant problem: food waste. About 2.2 million tonnes of food is thrown away by restaurants. That said, restaurants play an integral role in reducing the amount of food that goes to waste, and recycling leftovers is arguably the best approach. This article highlights food-recycling strategies that restaurants should employ to help avoid food waste.
Almost all of the garbage thrown out in restaurants is recyclable food. When this garbage ends up in landfills, it not only takes up space, but the decomposition process produces methane gas to the environment, which is toxic. Kitchen compost is an avenue that restaurants can use to recycle leftover food scraps. Not only is a kitchen compost convenient, but it also allows a restaurant to grow its vegetables and nourish its flowerbeds. The domino effect of kitchen compost is healthy vegetables — since a restaurant has greater control — and reduced cost of food.
Use Leftovers to Produce Biogas
Energy consumption in a commercial restaurant can be quite high, and this can make operations quite expensive. Despite this, most restaurants continue to rely on electricity for their lighting to heating needs. However, did you know that you could reduce food waste and bring down electricity bills by recycling leftovers? By collecting leftover food and composting it in a bio-digester, you can generate enough biogas to light up your stoves. Moreover, you no longer have to rely on butane gas cylinders for your cooking needs, and this can help you save hundreds of dollars daily. The best part is that the remnants from the bio-digester can be used to nourish a restaurant garden.
Donate to Animal Shelters
Some restaurants practice the nose-to-tail concept of food preparation as a way to avoid food waste. This is where a restaurant uses every part of an animal to minimize waste. However, few restaurants can pull this concept off primarily because it is challenging and time-consuming to prepare some animal parts. Such restaurants should consider donating these parts to animal shelters as a recycling strategy. For instance, most animal shelters rely on community goodwill for supplies such as bedding and food. However, such goodwill can only go so far, and leftover food donations can help to bridge the gap.
For more ideas on food waste recycling, reach out to a local recycling company.