Tackling Food Waste with Smart Technology
Sodexo's use of technology to tackle food waste has been recognised with a Best Waste Prevention Project award at the Waste2Zero Awards.
The Waste2Zero Awards were held at the exclusive In & Out in London’s St James’s Square and celebrated excellence in Waste Management and Prevention, providing the waste industry with a platform to showcase best practices and initiatives in this vital area.
The award highlighted Sodexo’s ongoing commitments to addressing the food waste crisis. Earlier this year the organisation pledged to cut food waste by 50% by 2025 - putting it ahead of the UN’s sustainable development goal to halve food waste globally by 2030.
To meet their food waste reduction commitment, in 2019, Sodexo announced the ambitious deployment of WasteWatch powered by LeanPath, a customised, global food waste prevention programme and a foundational element of Sodexo’s ambitious waste prevention initiative to 3,000 sites worldwide. This included a rapid deployment programme within the UK & Ireland.
Since the rollout began in the UK and Ireland, Sodexo has been deployed to over 200 sites and achieved an average reduction of 42%, equating to the saving of 538,285 meals, a weight of 293,008kg and 2041 tonnes CO2e.
An elite panel of judges were not only impressed by Sodexo’s food waste reduction but also their waste management processes, particularly their food waste management guide, which explains the food hierarchy for employees to ensure they focus on the reduction of food waste through several initiatives.
The award also recognised the importance Sodexo places on employee engagement concerning tackling food waste. The organisation has leveraged their relationship with WRAP as a Courtauld 2030 signatory, which has supported them in developing their messaging and educational tools.
In March 2021, Sodexo were named WRAP’s strategic partner for their Food Waste Action week and held a webinar in conjunction with WWF and WRAP for employees. They will work with WRAP again as one of the donors for Food Waste Action week 2022.
Catherine Burrows, Head of Waste Management for UK and Ireland, said: "We are delighted to win this award. Despite this challenging past year, our teams and clients have remained focused on reducing food waste sustainably.
“However, we are aware that much more is needed to make a long-term and sustainable change. That’s why, today and every day, we continue to play a critical role in helping to transform the food system and in supporting our clients with their own carbon reduction targets, with food waste being one aspect of this."
Sodexo has long been committed to cutting food waste as part of its Better Tomorrow 2025 global strategy. A commitment that was reaffirmed in its Social Impact Pledge 2021 earlier this year.
Published in October, Sodexo UK&I's roadmap to be net zero by 2045 targets food waste as a key driver.