Food waste is a significant global problem that affects many, and it’s most apparent across the food industry. Food waste is becoming a massive burden for the industry, with ever-increasing food costs amidst supply shortages.
Also, removing this food waste involves social, environmental, and financial strain. Additionally, with the increasing demand from customers for sustainable practices, a lot of pressure is on the food service sector to reduce food waste.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the causes of food waste and how to lower it ultimately.
Causes Of Food Wastage
Several factors contribute to cafe/restaurant food waste. Below are the most common reasons;
1. Miscalculated Portions.
Incorrect kitchen training can result in larger portion rates than planned. Although it may please your customers to take leftovers home, you lose valuable margin on the plate and create more food waste.
This type of food waste occurs when a dish is returned to the kitchen to be remade to the customer’s preference.
Whatever the cause of refires is, it costs you twice as much to make a plate of food.
Food can often become unhealthy for human consumption, and the causes might be poor storage, improper handling, or wrong packaging. Other causes of food spoilage are inadequate inventory, over-ordering, etc.
4. Food spillage.
It is the primary cause of food waste in any restaurant. It includes; accidentally knocking over a cutting board, spillage from kids, etc. These food spillages, no matter how small, add to substantial monetary losses.
How To Track Food Wastage In Your Restaurant/Cafe
A tracking tool is needed to lower food wastage in your cafes/ restaurants. There are different spreadsheet tools to use for tracking down food, and they include; Microsoft Excel, Apple numbers, Google Sheets, and more.
Once you have set up your spreadsheet, create different sections that will aid in tracking data. You can divide the sections with heading titles like ;
- Time and date of waste occurrence.
- Quantity of food waste.
- Recipe/ingredients wasted.
- Name of the staff responsible.
Methods On How To Lower Food Wastage
1. Track Your Inventory Stock Levels.
Failure to optimise your inventory ordering often leads to frequent food spoilage and shortages. Most restaurant owners often place unnecessarily large orders long before they are needed; they do this to cover their bases.
Large orders create excesses that remain unused for weeks and have a high risk of getting spoilt. Keeping an accurate stock of all your Inventories helps prevent food spoilage.
With excellent tracking of your stock levels, you can only order replenishment when needed.
2. Implementing Food Waste Reduction Rules.
Food wastage can be easily eliminated by implementing stringent policies. For example, you can teach prep cooks to cut, clean, trim, and control food portions.
It will significantly lower the food wastage generated daily in your restaurant.
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