10 Tips on how to ‘sustainably shake up your business’

ANYONE INVOLVED in foodservice will know how important ‘sustainability’ has become to end-eaters, says Andy Badger of Acquire Services.


To help caterers understand and influence their food offers there has been some new technology developments that help businesses construct and implement Corporate Social Responsibility objectives including CO2 emission and waste reduction.


Specialists in online procurement, Acquire Services Limited, has launched a new dashboard application, ‘Green10’, which has been specially designed to provide transparency of procurement profiles in the foodservice industry and boost businesses green credentials in ten simple ways. Here’s how…


  • Cutting food miles: One of the most straightforward ways to reduce your businesses environmental impact is to limit deliveries to your kitchen door. Fewer deliveries equals less CO2. To reduce food miles, streamline the number of deliveries you have by using ‘Green10’ to log the number of deliveries and distances to depots – making it simple to track your food mileage performance.


  • Clean conscience: Decide who you want to work with; Suppliers’ Corporate Social Responsibility policies will always differ but ‘Green10’ monitors the effectiveness of each of our suppliers’ policies and regularly audits their performance against a series of key performance metrics so you can choose to work with them or not. It’s up to you.


  • In season: Use fresh, seasonal produce, when it’s at its best to enhance menus. It’s possible to track the seasonality of goods and calculate the overall percentage of “seasonal” produce purchased by trading outlet.


  • Conserve: Pledge your support to the conservation of renewable resources by supporting supply chains whose products and packaging materials are certified as sourced from renewable channels.


  • Local, local, local: Take advantage of local and UK producers to boost your businesses green credentials. Whatever you decide is local, whether its 5 miles, 50 miles or 500 miles, it’s possible to track the origin of goods and calculate the overall percentage of “local” purchasing by trading unit and throughout an estate.


  • Culture club: Today, the UK enjoys a wide ranging population comprising many different ethnic groups, cultures and religions from around the world. Diversity of population means diversity of food preference and it’s crucial that caterers respond to the needs of their consumers. Where religious or cultural beliefs dictate the specification of food then foodservice operators must be confident in their supply chain being appropriately certified or accredited.


  • Animal magic: Consumer interest in the fair treatment of animals is a growing trend, from high-welfare meat to free-range eggs. Be sure to meet customers’ demands by working with only ethical producers.


  • Eat your greens: Promote healthy eating by offering a range of menu choices and dietary information, allowing customers to make informed health decisions. Quite simply, people want to know what they are eating! It’s a common consumer engagement strategy to make available healthy eating regimes which consumers can participate in if they wish to do so.


  • ‘Pack it in’: Government initiatives to reduce packaging waste are on the horizon and landfill waste has been targeted for reduction. Get ahead by connecting with suitably qualified Waste Contractors and suppliers who use sustainable packaging.


  • Waste not, want not: Manage menus and take advantage of ‘Green10’ to carefully manage food ordering to reduce food waste. In addition to controlling food orders effectively and managing over production it’s also important that the waste which is produced is disposed of properly and measured effectively so that waste reduction activity is mapped and progress is monitored.


Acquire Services Limited offers a range of services and systems, developed to support care catering operations of all sizes. For more information go to www.acquireservices.com