Food safety and sustainability: two hot topics in the hospitality today.
You may think digital food safety and sustainability are incompatible, but they’re a perfect match!
The pandemic has fast-tracked the digitalisation of many processes, as well as consumers’ requirements to eat safely and more sustainably. Hospitality and food services are therefore no exception in the global sustainability concern. On top of that, governments and NGOs are pushing, more than ever, for more sustainable restaurants and zero-waste hotels to achieve national and global low carbon footprint targets.
Now, the actual interesting bit for you!
Digital food safety management is a key ally for your foodservice business to tackle sustainability whilst achieving the highest safety standards. Going digital will not only help reduce your environmental impact but also lower some of your operational costs. Your resilience game for the foreseeable future will be massively on point.
Find out how and why in 4 ways. Read along!
Why is sustainability a key concern for hospitality?
Increased pressure from governments and NGOs
Hospitality is facing increasing pressure from governments and NGOs to embrace more environmentally friendly practices.
▸ At a national level:
The UK for instance has a national commitment of achieving net zero carbon by 2050. All industries, including hospitality, are expected to take part in this ambitious mission of “building back greener”.
▸ At a global level:
Governing bodies and NGOs, such as the UN, encourage hospitality and food businesses to implement sustainable practices. Indeed, restaurants, cafes, food suppliers, chains, hotels, schools and others can all contribute to at least 3 core UN Sustainability goals, mainly by reducing food waste:
Consumers’ mindset and lifestyle are changing
It’s a no brainer! The new generation of consumers come across as more aware of food’s environmental impact. In fact, there is a well documented growing public awareness and willingness to eat more sustainably.
“The concern about the environment among British diners has grown by nearly 40% since the pandemic struck” – Business Green, quoting a recent study led by the Sustainable Restaurant Association.
“Almost half (48%) of UK adults are now (post-lockdown) more conscious about the sustainability of their daily routine choices” found a research group from BRITA Professional.
So here’s the question. How can we operate more sustainably in the hospitality industry?
How can the foodservice industry implement safe and sustainable practices?
“Green & Safe” – that’s what we like to call it here at Navitas. As actively promoted by the Sustainable Restaurant Association in the UK, the foodservice sector has a key restorative role to play in minimising hospitality’s environmental footprint. But realistically speaking, how easy is it to become a more sustainable restaurant? As pressure for safer and greener practices is rising, here’s a non-exhaustive list of common hospitality sustainability practices:
- Prioritising local food suppliers to reduce food miles
- Shorter menus to reduce food waste
- Less single-use plastic for storage and service, switching to glass or compostable containers
- Improving indoors air quality and reducing the use of chemical-based cleaning products
- Digitalising food safety to be energy-efficient, cut food waste, save trees and lower operational costs
So, what’s on the green & safe menu for you today? Let’s dig a bit more into how digital food safety can help your food business become more sustainable.
Digital food safety for energy efficiencies 💡
Your foodservice business will become more energy-efficient by digitalising all your food safety processes. How? On one side, you’ll have reliable hardware such as smart probes and fridge sensors to automatically regulate temperature. That’s already a win right? You will also be equipped with one central database and software linked to those sensors. That way, you’ll be empowered to trace and proactively control your temperature and energy use. Also, this means less temperature-related wasted food. Digital food safety makes your business greener with efficient energy management!
Cutting food waste with digitalised food safety 🍊
Food waste management. This is the trending topic when it comes to food safety and sustainability. Just in the UK, food and hospitality businesses account for over a million tonnes of wasted food, annually. And within this food waste, 20% is coming straight from restaurants.
You might wonder why food waste is so much of an issue for the planet? It’s estimated to be responsible for about 30% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Olleco calculated that if all of the UK’s food waste could be picked up and re-used, this would save an amount of CO2 equalling a 30 square mile forest (the size of Scotland by the way). So let’s face it, there’s room for sustainability practices in hospitality.
So what can you do? Digital food safety is a great asset for hospitality’s food waste management. Allergen labelling printers, automated temperature checks and digital checklists and HACCPs can indeed help your business drastically cut food waste. Thanks to digital records enabling great traceability and accountability, there’s less food to waste. All of that whilst keeping your people safe.
Take full advantage of digital food safety by using food waste management organisations such as Too Good To Go to further reduce your food waste. With greater labelling and visibility on ‘sell by’ and ‘use by’ labels from digitalised food safety, hungry consumers will happily browse To Good To Go and pick up your last bits available! Winning! Reducing your restaurant carbon footprint is easy when you opt for digital food safety. And you’re trendy too 😎
Going paperless to reduce your business’ carbon footprint 🌳
One common way to embrace more sustainable practices is to go paperless. Similarly to house bills or bank statements, digitalising paperwork is ideal to lower your hospitality business’ carbon footprint. Indeed, digital food safety management will allow you to trade piles and piles of paperwork (you know, those 650 sheets of cleaning routine and training schedules) for time-saving automated digital records. All saved in one, central online platform.
That way, you’ll protect some trees whilst saving yourself some time and effort. The safe & green winning combo! Let’s also mention that digitalising food safety will enable you to work from home hassle-free.
Leicester College saves 264 hours annually with Navitas digital food safety. Total visibility on food safety whilst their staff focus on what they love. Explore more about this happy customer story!
Lowering operational costs by becoming greener 📉
Did the title make you frown? No need to do so! Becoming more sustainable with digital food safety will also lower some operational costs. Especially when it’s a one-stop destination like Navitas Safety! So yes, it’s good for the planet but also for you as a foodservice owner, manager or chef. The combination of sensors, automated temperature checks, cloud-base digital records and data-rich reports will positively impact your operational costs. How so?
- ⚡️Energy efficiencies
- ♻️ Reduced food waste so less landfill disposal costs → (Olleco estimated that food businesses could save £10,000 annually by lowering food waste!)
- 🗞 Less paper, files and folders to buy
- 📊 Optimised food stocks (less contamination incidents and food waste)
- 🗣 Brand protection and no PR disaster recovery costs thanks to better traceability and efficiencies
- 🔄 Minimised outsourced services (external auditors, training: Navitas does it all!)
- 🏡 Reduced commuting cost for management (work from home stress-free with digital records)
How does it feel to be greener and safer whilst optimising your food business’ operational costs?
Digital food safety is green & trendy
Soon, the hospitality industry will be likely to face new regulations fostering more sustainable practices. Imagine displaying on your door “We are a sustainable restaurant” next to your 5* hygiene rating (read our tips here on hygiene scores). Yes, the goosebumps were real for us too!
Because safety comes first in the foodservice sector, sustainability is often left in the backlog. Digital food safety empowers your team to combine both safety and sustainability in one go. You can prepare for the next generation of food consumers by being safe, green and trendy.
We understand becoming a fully zero-waste food business is a real challenge. That’s why you can start with baby steps to incorporate more environmental-friendly processes. Sustainable food safety starts digital! Everybody is talking about digitalisation right now so don’t miss the boat. Get holistic, no-hassle and efficient control on your food safety processes and sustainability goals.