Towards a more sustainable food supply chain: opening up invisible waste in food service
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Future challenges to the global food supply chain are complex. In order to embrace sustainability, companies should change their management practices towards more efficient resource use. Food waste being a misuse of resources, we identify its causes and possible ways of minimising it. To achieve this goal, we conducted explorative research with qualitative and quantitative data through in-depth semi-structured interviews and an open questionnaire with top Spanish food service companies. Results show that most businesses mainly tend to minimise food waste according to economic criteria, without taking into account the social, ethical or environmental factors. As a consequence, just “visible” food waste that has an economic impact on the results is minimised. Nevertheless, visibility of real waste is often low. At the same time, awareness of (and therefore initiatives to reduce) food waste that does not directly affect a firm’s profit can be increased through multi-stakeholder collaboration. Opportunities for reducing food waste therefore arise from increasing the visibility of food that is discarded as well as addressing plate waste. We identify best practices that could lead to a reduction of the amount of food waste generated in the out of home channel in Spain.
CitationDerqui, B., Fayos, T., Fernandez, V. Towards a more sustainable food supply chain: opening up invisible waste in food service. "Sustainability", 20 Juliol 2016, vol. 8, núm. 7.