25th April 2019

Day of action to reduce food waste in Ireland

24 April 2019: Roughly one-third of the food produced globally is either lost or wasted every year.

In Ireland, over one million tonnes of food waste is disposed of each year and around one-third of this waste comes from households1. Compass Group Ireland, a leader in food service, is today marking Stop Food Waste Day, an international day of action in the fight against food waste, in partnership with 99 sites across Ireland including Intel, Maynooth University and Vodafone. Launched by Compass Group USA in 2017, Stop Food Waste Day is an annual event to raise awareness of the issue of food waste and encourage the industry, from farm to fork, to reduce the amount of food thrown away. Compass Group Ireland is working with its suppliers, employees and customers to deliver meaningful solutions to address this global problem. With one-third of Irish food waste coming from households, this means that each person is throwing out about 80kg of food waste and costing Irish householders €700 each year. The most common foods thrown away in Ireland are:

  • 50% of salads
  • 25% of fruit and vegetables – potatoes are the most wasted vegetable and bananas and apples are the most wasted fruit
  • 20% of bread and bakery goods
  • 10% of meat and fish

Compass Group Ireland has committed to reducing its food waste by 20% by 2025. Compass Group clients and staff in Ireland will come together to focus on reducing food surplus and raising awareness of ways to save at home. Activities include:

  • Customer Workshops on No Waste – How to utilise leftovers and trimmings
  • A series of staff team briefings on reducing food waste in their unit
  • Dedicated Culinary Council Meeting of all Compass Group head chefs to develop new recipes around food waste
  • Introducing the Food Liberation concept across the business – this is a new concept which focuses on creating great flavour and food experiences that are better for people and the planet. The aim is to minimise food waste one dish at a time by deploying stem to tip recipes which incorporate every part of the vegetable. Stalks and all!
  • Social media campaign using the hashtag #stopfoodwasteday to drive interest.

Chris Chidley, Managing Director, Compass Group Ireland, said: “Food waste is a serious problem for the world today, and as one of the leaders in food service, we are determined to play our part in driving change. Working with our suppliers, partners, clients and consumers in Ireland, we are focused on educating our teams and our customers on how they can play their part in cutting food waste, today and every day.” “We are delighted to have 99 sites across Ireland participating in this year’s Stop Food Waste Day, including Intel, Maynooth University and Vodafone, to help drive awareness of the environmental and sustainability practices which can be implemented to help reduce waste in Ireland.”

Compass Group Ireland’s other food waste achievements include:

  • In 2014 Compass Group Ireland partnered with technology company, Winnow, whose
  • ‘smart scales’ technology enables commercial kitchens to measure and better manage food waste. Since 2014, food waste has been cut across the 12 Ireland sites including at Vodafone where we have reduced food waste by 26% in volume from 2015-2018 in support of Vodafone’s Sustainable Business Strategy. In the last quarter of 2018, Compass Group Ireland have saved 15 tonnes of food waste and 67 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
  • Compass Group Ireland actively choose to buy visually imperfect produce for certain recipes to help reduce unneeded waste. Overall, 68,000KG of the produce Compass Group Ireland buy to process is visually imperfect.
  • At a number of sites, Compass Group Ireland bag up coffee ground waste and offer them free to consumers for use in their gardens. Using coffee grounds as a fertiliser adds organic material to the soil, which improves drainage, water retention and aeration in the soil. The used coffee grounds also attract earthworms and help other beneficial microorganisms thrive.
  • In 2018 Compass Group Ireland recycled over 110,000 litres of used cooking oil into biodiesel.
  • Compass Group Ireland has partnered with Ready Chef to jointly tackle food waste in the supply chain and actively buy vegetable waste generated at the Ready Chef processing factory.
Compass Ireland Food Waste Day
Compass Ireland Food Waste Day