Food waste prevention vital for business
Tackling food waste was on the menu last week for East Cork restaurateurs, food producers and food retailers as the Savour Food programme served up awards for best practice in food waste management.
Savour Food, a food waste reduction programme for businesses has been working with those in the food sector in East Cork for the past year.
It provides free consultancy, food waste prevention training and advice on legal obligations in relation to food waste management.
Supported by the Clean Technology Centre (CIT), SECAD, and Taste Cork, the Savour Food Awards acknowledge participation in the programme, and were presented to 11 East Cork businesses.
Speaking at the awards, Savour Food programme lead, James Hogan of the Clean Technology Centre said: “In Ireland, we generate over one million tonnes of waste food each year, 75% of which is generated in food production, service and retail.
“Wasted food is wasted money, as well as having implications for the environment and climate change.
“The Savour Food programme advises businesses on how to monitor and prevent food waste which results in reduced food waste and cost savings.”
Mr Hogan noted: “One restaurant in Youghal has reduced its waste collection costs by €160 per month or €2,000 per annum at ‘no cost’ to the business.
“This equates to increasing turnover by €10,000 per annum,” he said.
“We are delighted to see 11 food companies receiving Savour Food Awards and look forward to rolling out the next phase of the Savour Food programme this January
“We are currently inviting food businesses from the Clonakilty and Ballyhoura regions to join the programme.”
Better planning, food waste segregation, waste auditing and waste cost analy- sis are key elements of the Savour Food programme, which is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, and provided free of charge to food businesses.
Programme partner SECAD CEO Ryan Howard said, “The Savour Food pro- gramme is a win-win for the food sector.
“Not only is it an ideal way for businesses to save money on food waste, meet best practice guidelines for the food sector, it also ensures that we are respecting our environment for a more sustainable future.”
Steve Guiney, food and beverage manager at Jameson Distillery, Midleton, with Keelin Tobin, Savour Food (Clean Technology Centre), and Ross Curley, SECAD, at the Savour Food Programme event in East Cork.