Food Waste Reduction: The business case

A report released by the Champions 12.3 coalition titled The Business Case for Reducing Food Waste outlined the severity of the global food waste crisis and the urgent need for change across companies, cities and countries. The report analysed over 1,000 companies and found a median return on investment of 14:1. Regardless of where your business fits into the food system, a comprehensive food waste reduction strategy is definitely worth the investment.

Stakeholder Relationships

Coverage of food loss and waste reduction efforts can build a positive picture of your workplace/organisation—improving its social license to operate—and can reach a wide audience of existing and prospective customers.

Food waste fighting efforts can strengthen customer relationships, retention, and loyalty.

“Why wouldn’t we want to have a look at this [food loss and waste reduction]? We can look at it through commercial sensibility, because waste ultimately has to be paid for, so if we eradicate it we can lower our costs. We might even be able to improve the margins if that’s the thing that really drives us. But there’s also a bigger goal which is how we might make a contribution to that massive inequality that exists already in terms of those who have food and those that don’t. Both of them, I think, are enough for us as an industry to motivate ourselves, engage ourselves, and innovate against this need.”

— Dave Lewis, CEO, Tesco

What happens if you don’t recycle your food waste?

  • Total waste management costs will rise over time due to landfill tax increasing.
  • You will not see clearly how much food waste is being thrown away and how you might be able to reduce it.
  •  Food waste from your business will continue to contribute to harmful greenhouse gas emissions in landfill.
  • As customers and staff become increasingly conscientious about waste and recycling at home and at work, you may be perceived as ‘out of touch’.

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