Almost 70 percent of hospitality staff looking to change jobs, finds survey

CatererGlobal has called the results ‘concerning’

Close to 70 percent of hospitality workers are looking to change jobs in the next 12 months, with many of them based in the Middle East.

That is according to research conducted by hospitality job board, who surveyed 1,500 hospitality workers, 46 percent of which are in this region.

With the COVID-19 pandemic creating job uncertainty for all industries, CatererGlobal saw an alarming spike in how many people were looking to change jobs. Of those surveyed, 67 percent are planning to make a career move in the next 12 months, with 54 percent looking to change employers.

“These figures continue to cause concern and should, rightly, cause employers to sit up and consider how they might change the course for any staff considering leaving, said Jeremy Vercoe, global manager for

Since we saw high rates of planned mobility last year, we’ve been giving this an extra focus with clients, however, this year’s results indicate that, across the industry, there is still a lot more to be done,” Vercoe continued.

In relation to the pandemic, 43 percent said their employers had provided training in order to ‘upskill’ their staff outside of their current department, only half (49 percent) of respondents claimed their businesses delivered staff programmes in response to the pandemic.

“While this is a promising start, there is still a significant opportunity to provide greater training and development across multiple key business themes, to allow teams to thrive both professionally and with their state-of-mind,” added Vercoe.

One-third of respondents (33 percent) indicated they were placed on unpaid leave, 15 percent were asked to work from home and 17 percent were made redundant. Just 22 percent continued to work as usual without any change. Overall, more than half (53 percent) of respondents indicated their organisations were suspended as a result of the pandemic.

Source: Hotelier Middle East

Study: Fix to food climate problem doesn’t require veganism

A new study says how we grow, eat and waste food is a big climate change problem that may keep the world from reaching its temperature-limiting goals, but we don’t all have to go vegan

The world likely can’t keep global warming to a relatively safe minimum unless we change how we grow, eat and throw away our food, but we don’t need to all go vegan, a new study says. 

Researchers looked at five types of broad fixes to the food system and calculated how much they fight warming. They found that sampling a buffet of partial fixes for all five, instead of just diving into the salad bar, can get the job done, according to a study published in Thursday’s journal Science.

If the world food system keeps on current trajectories, it will produce near 1.5 trillion tons of greenhouse gases (almost 1.4 trillion metric tons) over the next 80 years, the study found. That’s coming from belching cows, fertilizer, mismanaged soil and food waste. That much emissions — even if the globe stops burning fossil fuelswhich produce twice as much carbon pollution as food — is enough to likely warm Earth by more than the goals set in the 2015 Paris climate accord.

“The whole world doesn’t have to give up meat for us to meet our climate goals,” said study co-author Jason Hill, a biosystems engineering professor at the University of Minnesota. “We can eat better, healthier foods. We can improve how we grow foods. And we can waste less food.”

Researchers from the United States and the United Kingdom found: 

— A nearly complete switch to a plant-rich diet around the world could slash almost 720 billion tons of greenhouse gases (650 billion metric tons).

— If almost everyone ate the right number of calories based on their age, around 2,100 calories a day for many adults, it would cut about 450 billion tons of greenhouse gases (410 billion metric tons).

— If farming got more carbon efficient — by using less fertilizer, managing soil better and doing better crop rotation — it would slice nearly 600 billion tons of greenhouse gases (540 billion metric tons).

— If farms could increase yield through genetics and other methods, it would trim almost 210 billion tons of greenhouse gases (190 billion metric tons).

— If people waste less food either on their plates, in restaurants or by getting it to people in poorer countries, that would eliminate nearly 400 billion tons of greenhouse gases (360 billion metric tons).

Or if the world does each of those five things but only half way, emissions would plummet by almost 940 billion tons (850 billion metric tons). And that, with fossil fuel emissions cuts, would give the world a fighting chance of preventing another 0.5 to 1.3 degrees (0.3 to 0.7 degrees Celsius) of warming, which the Paris accord aims to do, the study found.

Hans-Otto Poertner, who leads the United Nations science panel looking at world climate change impacts, said the study makes sense in laying out the many paths to achieving the needed emission reductions. 

“There are many innovations that are possible with stopping food waste as well as stopping unsustainable practices such as cutting tropical forests for soy production and its export as (animal) feed,” said Poertner, who wasn’t part of the study. “It cannot be ignored that reducing meat consumption to sustainable levels would be important.”

A Mediterranean diet of less meat and animal fats, along with cutting portions, would do the trick and make people healthier, Hill said.

“Something like convincing the whole world to go vegan was always going to be an impossible large sell,’’ said Breakthrough Institute climate director Zeke Hausfather, who wasn’t part of the study. “This paper shows that a mix of different behavioral and technological solutions can make a real difference.”

While most of the world’s heat-trapping gases come from the burning of coal, oil and natural gas, one-quarter to one-third of the greenhouse gases come from agriculture, Hill said. 

John Roy Porter, a professor of agriculture at the University of Montpellier in France, said some of the calculations from Hill’s study double counted emissions, which Hill disputes, and said he worried that “the only people really to profit from such a paper will be the fossil fuel lobby who can divert attention from oil wells to farmers’ fields.”

Source: The Independant

UK must cut meat and dairy consumption by half to meet 2050 net zero emissions target, says report

Flying will also have to be curbed, according to the research

Meat and dairy consumption may need to be reduced by 50% if the UK is to meet its net zero emissions target by 2050, according to a new report.

Produced by the government-funded not-for-profit group Energy Systems Catapult (ESC), the research stated that the 2050 goal would be possible if innovation is stepped up in three key fields.

In lifestyle, cuts to meat and dairy consumption by 20% will be necessary, but may need to rise to as high as 50% depending on the success of carbon neutrality initiatives.

Doing so, it forecast, would save about eight million tonnes of carbon emissions from entering the atmosphere.

The report – which looked at 100 different pathways the UK could follow in order to meet the climate change goal – also detailed the necessity for reduced reliance on aviation.   

Current predictions suggest flying frequency will increase by 60% compared to 2005 levels. However, it will need to rise by just 20% to ensure the UK remains on track with the net zero goal.

Net zero refers to the offsetting of all carbon dioxide emissions, either through carbon removal initiatives or cutting emissions altogether, which the UK aims to achieve by 2050.

The other two areas in which the report suggested significant changes will be necessary is in low carbon technologies – centring on hydrogen, electricity generation such as through wind and solar power, and carbon capture and storage through bioenergy – and land use, for instance, through the planting of forests a third the size of Greater London annually.READ MOREHow more trees in London could keep our city cool

While the report detailed initial enthusiasm from the public for the adoption of new technologies, when it came to eagerness to make lifestyle changes – including dietary – it noted “a more resistant and emotional response”.

Scott Milne, ESC insight and evidence lead, said of the report: “Now for the first time, we’ve modelled hundreds of potential pathways to get to Net Zero by 2050, ramping up or down different technologies and behaviour changes – to understand the different combinations, interactions and trade-offs of competing decarbonisation options to reach the most cost-optimised approaches. In lifestyle, cuts to meat and dairy consumption by 20% will be necessary, but may need to rise to as high as 50% depending on the success of carbon neutrality initiatives.

Doing so, it forecast, would save about eight million tonnes of carbon emissions from entering the atmosphere.

The report – which looked at 100 different pathways the UK could follow in order to meet the climate change goal – also detailed the necessity for reduced reliance on avaition.

Net zero refers to the offsetting of all carbon dioxide emissions, either through carbon removal initiatives or cutting emissions altogether, which the UK aims to achieve by 2050. Scott Milne, ESC insight and evidence lead, said of the report: “Now for the first time, we’ve modelled hundreds of potential pathways to get to Net Zero by 2050, ramping up or down different technologies and behaviour changes – to understand the different combinations, interactions and trade-offs of competing decarbonisation options to reach the most cost-optimised approaches.

“Broadly each potential pathway uses a combination of two different approaches: a top-down technology focused approach or a bottom-up behaviour focused approach.”

He added: “However, what stands out is – no matter which pathway the UK takes – innovation, investment and incentives across low carbon technology, land use and lifestyle is essential to achieve Net Zero.”

The 2050 net zero emissions target was an amendment to the Climate Change Act 2008, announced in the final days of Theresa May’s premiership last year

Stop Food Waste Day

SAVE FOOD: Global Initiative on Food Loss and Waste Reduction

Key facts on food loss and waste you should know!

33% of all food produced globally is lost or wasted every year

45% of root crops, fruit and vegetables produced globally is lost or wasted per year

25% of the food wasted globally could feed all 795 million undernourished people in the world

Food losses and waste amounts to roughly US$ 680 billion in industrialized countries and US$ 310 billion in developing countries

  • Fruits and vegetables, plus roots and tubers have the highest wastage rates of any food. 
  • Global quantitative food losses and waste per year are roughly 30% for cereals, 40-50% for root crops, fruits and vegetables, 20% for oil seeds, meat and dairy plus 35% for fish. 
  • Every year, consumers in rich countries waste almost as much food (222 million tonnes) as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa (230 million tonnes). 
  • The amount of food lost or wasted every year is equivalent to more than half of the world’s annual cereals crop (2.3 billion tonnes in 2009/2010). 
  • Per capita waste by consumers is between 95-115 kg a year in Europe and North America, while consumers in sub-Saharan Africa, south and south-eastern Asia, each throw away only 6-11 kg a year. 
  • Total per capita food production for human consumption is about 900 kg a year in rich countries, almost twice the 460 kg a year produced in the poorest regions. 
  • In developing countries 40% of losses occur at post-harvest and processing levels while in industrialized countries more than 40% of losses happen at retail and consumer levels.
  •  At retail level, large quantities of food are wasted due to quality standards that over emphasise appearance.
  • Food loss and waste also amount to a major squandering of resources, including water, land, energy, labour and capital and needlessly produce greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to global warming and climate change.
  • In developing countries food waste and losses occur mainly at early stages of the food value chain and can be traced back to financial, managerial and technical constraints in harvesting techniques as well as storage and cooling facilities. Strengthening the supply chain through the direct support of farmers and investments in infrastructure, transportation, as well as in an expansion of the food and packaging industry could help to reduce the amount of food loss and waste.
  •  In medium- and high-income countries food is wasted and lost mainly at later stages in the supply chain. Differing from the situation in developing countries, the behaviour of consumers plays a huge part in industrialized countries. The study identified a lack of coordination between actors in the supply chain as a contributing factor. Farmer-buyer agreements can be helpful to increase the level of coordination. Additionally, raising awareness among industries, retailers and consumers as well as finding beneficial use for food that is presently thrown away are useful measures to decrease the amount of losses and waste.

Sources: &

Is Breakfast The Most Important Meal Of The Day? New Research Suggests Not

We often hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially if we’re trying to manage their weight. But new research suggests this might not be true. 

Previous studies have suggested that eating breakfast revs up the metabolism and can help dieters stop overeating later in the day.

But a new review found that eating breakfast does not appear to help people lose weight and should not necessarily be recommended as a weight-loss strategy. 

Experts from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, examined 13 studies related to breakfast and weight in high income countries, including the UK.

The pooled results found a very small difference in weight between those who ate breakfast and those who did not, with those who skipped breakfast on average 0.44kg lighter. Those who ate breakfast also ate more calories per day – about 260 more on average.

People who skipped breakfast did not compensate by eating more later in the day, the review found.

The researchers also found no significant difference in metabolic rates between breakfast eaters and breakfast skippers – suggesting there is no evidence that eating it may help with weight loss due to “efficient” burning of calories earlier in the day.

The authors said the overall quality of the studies was low and more research is needed.

Writing in the BMJ, they said: “Caution is needed when recommending breakfast for weight loss in adults, as it could have the opposite effect.”

However, the researchers did note that eating breakfast regularly could have other important effects aside from weight loss, such as improved concentration and attentiveness levels in children.

Commenting on the results, Dr Frankie Phillips, registered dietitian for the British Dietetic Association, said: “Whilst some studies do show that people who eat breakfast tend to be a healthier weight, there is no clear benefit of starting to eat breakfast just as a tool to lose weight.

“The study shows that simply having breakfast isn’t a magic recipe for weight loss for everyone. If you do enjoy breakfast, don’t stop, but take a look at what you are having.”

To do breakfast the right way, she recommended a simple breakfast of wholegrain cereal and milk with a glass of unsweetened fruit juice and a cup of tea. 

Source: Huffington Post, UK

How Countries Around the World Take Their Coffee

Coffee is a beverage that’s universally beloved (and obsessed over) by people of all nations.

You don’t need to speak the same language to appreciate the comfort of a steamy cup of Joe on a bitterly cold winter morning. Worshipping the same God isn’t a prerequisite for experiencing the always faithful boost of energy an espresso can provide at any hour, day or night.

For centuries, coffee has been a come-as-you-are kind of beverage, a conduit for communication and connection whether the person sitting across from you is considered a friend, family member, stranger or foe.

No matter where you roam in the world, coffee is most likely a given — which is why it’s essential, especially for caffeine diehards, to understand the customs and rules that govern a peoples’ coffee culture.

Here’s how countries around the world get their caffeine fix.

Café de Olla – Mexico

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According to legend, café de olla was born during the Mexican revolution of 1910. Cinnamon and piloncillo (unrefined sugar) were mixed with coffee, which was then steeped in clay pots over an open fire and served to soldiers in need of an energizing caffeine boost.

Since then, café de olla has retired from the battlefield and become an honored tradition in Mexican culture. Today, in addition to cinnamon, café de olla is often prepared with orange peel, star anise and clove, making for a truly intoxicating blend.

Café de olla traditionalists still insist on brewing the coffee in earthen clay, but in modern times a metal pot with a sturdy handle will suffice.

Filtered Coffee – Southern India

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India’s coffee fate was sealed in the 17th century when Sufi saint Baba Budan, while on a pilgrimage to Mecca, smuggled a handful of coffee beans from Yemen’s port city of Mocha back to Karnataka, India. Upon his return, Budan planted the beans;  as the story goes, he had exactly seven, which was all it took for coffee plants to sprout up all over a mountain range, making coffee plentiful in Southern India.

For an authentic cup, boiled water is poured over coffee grounds packed into a filter. This process creates a decoction, a concentrated mix of coffee that drips through the filter and into a cup. Once the coffee becomes thick, boiled whole milk and sugar are added to create the robust brew that Southern India has come to know and love.

Caffè Normale – Italy

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From Milan to Naples, caffè in Italy is hailed as both an institution and an art form. But to enjoy it properly and avoid getting the stink eye from your barista, a few rules and standards must be obliged.

For starters, all coffee in Italy begins and ends with espresso. A standard caffè normale or caffè is served black as a single shot meant to be consumed in one quick gulp while standing. Unlike in the U.S., to-go coffee is not common here, and attempting to order it this way will most likely result in a few discreet eye rolls from nearby locals.

Also contrary to coffee culture in The States, the cappuccino — a quintessential Italian drink made of equal parts espresso, milk and foam — should only be enjoyed with breakfast and never after 11 a.m. However, if you’re jonesing for an espresso with a touch of milk, the macchiato is a safe choice, and like espresso, it’s generally considered acceptable to order throughout the day.

Café au Lait – France

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Wake up in France, and you’ll most likely start your day with a tartine, a toasted baguette served with butter and jam. And you’ll probably wash it down with a creamy French favorite: the café au lait.

A simple combination of coffee and hot milk, the café au lait is traditionally served in a generously sized bowl. As in Italy, it’s considered inappropriate to consume after 10 a.m.

While France often receives bad marks for its coffee, there’s something undeniably Parisian about sitting solo at a bistro table with a café au lait and losing track of the time while watching the city and its people pass you by.

Turkish Coffee – Turkey

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Contrary to popular belief, Turkish coffee isn’t precisely Turkish. Rather, it’s an interpretation of coffee preparation that is common in the Arab world.

Regardless, Turkish coffee remains an indispensable part of Turkish heritage and culture. No social gathering or special occasion would be complete without a meticulously crafted pot.

The brewing process starts with finely ground roasted coffee beans. The beans, along with cold water and sugar, are added to an ibrik, a wide bottomed, long-handled copper coffee pot. This mixture is brought to a boil and then removed from the heat before it’s placed back on the stovetop for a second boil.

During this double-boiling process, a caramel colored foam builds on the surface of the coffee, which can be scooped off the top if desired. After cooking, the coffee sits for a few minutes to allow the grounds to settle. At this point, spices such as cardamom or cinnamon can be added for a kick of flavor.

Importantly, the coffee grounds remain at the bottom of the cup, and are not meant to be consumed. Instead, the remaining streaks of black sludge can either be tossed or used for fortune telling.

Kouhii – Japan

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Since the 1600s, Japan has slowly been cultivating its passion for coffee.

The love affair began during Japan’s self-imposed isolation period, when Dutch traders brought coffee (aka koffie) through Nagasaki. At first, the Japanese disliked the drink, but once the isolation period ended and coffee flooded the island, reaching a wider range of taste buds, coffee experienced a surge in popularity.  

In the early 1900s, the first kissaten cafes began popping up in Japan, attracting writers and artists looking for a comfortable spot to enjoy a fresh cup. In the 1980s, when Japan experienced unparalleled prosperity, coffee shops began to take over the country, ushering in the coffee culture that prospers in Japan today. (In the country, coffee is called kouhii.)

In recent years, specialty coffee shops in Japan have turned coffee into a distinct art form, cleverly using milk foam to sculpt anime characters, rabbits, kittens and puppies.

Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony – Ethiopia

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Both a spiritual practice and a social activity, Ethiopia’s elaborate coffee ceremony dates back centuries and remains an integral part of daily life.  

Traditionally, each ceremony lasts up to three hours and is performed three times a day. To begin, the woman of the house prepares the ceremonial room by burning incense to ward off evil spirits. Next, a jebena, a clay coffee pot, is filled with water and set on a pile of hot coals. The hostess then takes a handful of raw coffee beans, adds them to a large pan and shakes them over an open fire to remove the husks.

Once clean, the beans are roasted and crushed by hand with a mukechawooden bowl, similar to a mortar, and a zenezena blunt-end cylinder identical to a pestle. The grounds are placed in the jebena, now filled with boiling water, and once ready the coffee is served to the guests of the ceremony. The ritual is then repeated two more times.

Kahvi – Finland

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Imagine a world where workplace coffee breaks are mandatory. Where every piping hot cup of java is served alongside a flaky cinnamon roll, and where drinking 10-plus cups of coffee a day is considered normal.

For coffee aficionados, there is such a place, and it’s called Finland.

Recognized as the world’s top coffee consumer Finland is a place where locals refuse to live without their kahvi, even during times of war. According to one source, during World War II, when coffee disappeared, desperate yet resourceful Finns boiled pine bark, potato peels and anything else they could find to approximate a close-enough-to-coffee substitute.

Luckily, Finland’s coffee coffers are beyond replenished now, and finding the stuff, even in the most remote corners of the country, is never an issue. And if you’re fortunate enough to be invited into someone’s home for coffee, it’s considered rude to refuse the offering.

No matter how many cups you’ve already had.

Viennese Coffee House – Austria

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The heart of Austria’s coffee culture has been beating for over 300 years inside Vienna’s elegant, chandelier-lit coffee houses.

It all started in September 1683 during the Siege of Vienna, when defenders of the city crushed the invading Turks of the Ottoman Empire. As the Turkish troops retreated, the Austrian forces swooped in and collected their abandoned coffee beans, along with other treasures. On that victorious day, Vienna’s love affair with coffee began, and coffee houses started popping up across the city.

While most of the original cafes in Vienna have been renovated, many of the customs that inspired UNESCO to add the Viennese coffee house to the 2011 intangible cultural heritage list remain untouched. Locals still refer to the establishments as extended living rooms, where it’s okay to spend your entire day sitting, reading, nibbling on strudel or discussing the day’s news.

The coffee itself, after 300 years, is still served on a small silver platter, with a polished silver spoon, a few cubes of sugar and a glass of water.

Café Touba – Senegal


Sheikh Ahmadou Bamba, creator of the Mouride Brotherhood and founder of the city of Touba, first introduced café Touba to the country of Senegal in the late 1800s. Initially, Bamba exclusively shared this coffee — which is boiled with Selim pepper, a warming spice — with his followers, who needed the extra energy to remain awake during long chanting sessions.

Over time, the drink spread across Senegal, and today the people of this West African country not only enjoy it, but consider it a symbol of their identity and a staple of their culture.

Much like Turkish coffee, Touba is boiled with cloves, sugar and Selim pepper. However, unlike with the Turkish style, the resulting brew is aerated by rhythmically pouring the coffee back and forth between two cups before serving.

Cà Phê Trúng – Vietnam


In 1946, in response to milk shortages triggered by the First Indochina War, Nguyen Van Giang, a bartender at Hanoi’s Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel, began adding whisked egg yolks to coffee as a substitute for milk. Patrons of the hotel immediately embraced his creamy, caffeinated invention, and soon Giang opened Café Giang, where his infamous egg coffee, or cà phê trúng, became fixed in Vietnam’s coffee culture.

In addition to whisked egg yolks, the modern version of cà phê trúng includes sugar, condensed milk, cheese and even butter. The result is a decadent coffee that has often been compared to tiramisu or a creamy Cadbury egg.


Brain food: 6 snacks that are good for the mind. What can you eat to make you smarter?

Eating well doesn’t just boost your strength – the nutrients in food are also excellent fuel for the brain. US scientists have discovered that a handful of walnuts a day can help improve your memory. Adults who ate 13g of walnuts every day performed significantly better on cognitive tests than those who didn’t, and so walnuts have been added to the growing list of foods for geniuses. But what other snacks can make you smarter? Here’s a few of the foods you should eat to help strengthen your brain.



Researchers from Tufts University found that blueberries don’t simply improve memory – they can actually reverse memory loss. A study published in the Journal of Neuroscience found an extract of blueberries eaten every day led to a reversal of nerve cell damage in rats. After eating their daily dose of berries, the rodents learned faster, had a better short-term memory and had improved balance and co-ordination. The humble blueberry is truly a superfood for your brain cells.



Some healthy eating devotees take a regular dose of pure fish oil but if you can’t stomach the dietary supplement, eating plenty of salmon is an excellent alternative. Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are crucial for a healthy diet, and offers a sizeable portion of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Not only are fatty acids good for the heart, but DHA has also been found to boost neuron function in the brain.



Avocados may be fatty, but they contain extremely healthy unsaturated fats, which help to keep brain cell membranes flexible. The monounsaturated fatty acids in avocadoes work to protect nerve cells in the brain and have been found to improve the brain’s muscle strength. The same fats lead to healthy blood flow and lower blood pressure and both of these, in turn, help the brain to function at its optimum capacity.


Whole Grains

The brain is like all other bodily organs and relies on a steady flow of energy to perform at its best. Our concentration skills are linked to the brain’s supply of glucose. Whole grains with a low GI (glycaemic index) are a healthy brain food as they slowly and steadily release glucose into the bloodstream. Other carbohydrates are a more unstable source of glucose – white rice and pasta will cause energy levels to peak and then crash, leaving your brain feeling weak and exhausted.



Broccoli is a source of two crucial nutrients that help improve brain function. Vitamin K helps to strengthen cognitive abilities while Choline has been found to improve memory – people who eat plenty of broccoli perform better on memory tests. Broccoli also includes a sizeable serving of folic acid, which can help ward off Alzheimer’s disease. Studies suggest that a lack of folic acid could lead to depression, so eating plenty of broccoli could also keep you happy.


Dark Chocolate

Who says that healthy food can’t be delicious? Cocoa can improve verbal fluency and cognitive function in elderly people, while eating a daily portion of dark chocolate has been found to improve blood flow to the brain. So don’t feel guilty about that chocolate bar – your brain will thank you.




Think organic food is better for you, animals, and the planet? Think again

What we eat is seen as more important than ever. And everywhere we are urged to go organic: we are told it is more nutritious, it improves animal welfare and helps the environment. In reality, that is mostly marketing hype.

In 2012 Stanford University’s Centre for Health Policy did the biggest comparison of organic and conventional foods and found no robust evidence for organics being more nutritious. A brand-new reviewhas just repeated its finding: “Scientific studies do not show that organic products are more nutritious and safer than conventional foods.”

Likewise, animals on organic farms are not generally healthier. A five year US study showed that organic “health outcomes are similar to conventional dairies”. The Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food Safety found “no difference in objective disease occurrence.” Organic pigs and poultry may enjoy better access to open areas, but this increases their load of parasites, pathogens and predators. Meanwhile the organic regulation against feeding bee colonies with pollen supplements in low-pollen periods along with regulation against proper disinfection leads to sharply lower bee welfare.

Organic farming is sold as good for the environment. This is correct for a single farm field: organic farming uses less energy, emits less greenhouse gasses, nitrous oxide and ammonia and causes less nitrogen leeching than a conventional field. But each organic field yields much, much less. So, to grow the same amount of wheat, spinach or strawberries, you need much more land. That means that average organic produce results in the emission of about as many greenhouse gasses as conventional produce; and about 10 per cent more nitrous oxide, ammonia and acidification. Worse, to produce equivalent quantities, organic farms need to occupy 84 per cent more land – land which can’t be used for forests and genuine nature reserves. For example, to produce the amount of food America does today, but organically, would require increasing its farmland by the size of almost two United Kingdoms. That is the equivalent of eradicating all parklands and wild lands in the lower 48 states.

But surely organics avoid pesticides? No. Organic farming can use any pesticide that is “natural”. This includes copper sulphate, which has resulted in liver disease in vineyard sprayers in France. Pyrethrin is another organic pesticide; one study shows a 3.7-fold increase in leukaemia among farmers who handled pyrethrins compared to those who had not.

Conventional food, it’s true, has higher pesticide contamination. Although it is still very low, this is a definite benefit of organics. However, using a rough upper estimate by the head of the US Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Toxicology, all conventional pesticide residues may cause an extra 20 cancer deaths per year in America.

This pales in comparison to the impact of organics. If all of the United States were to go organic, the cost would likely be around $200 billion annually from lower productivity. This is money we can’t spend on hospitals, pensioner care, schools, or infrastructure.

Such economic impacts also have life and death consequences. Research shows that when a nation becomes $15 million poorer, it costs one “statistical” life, because people are able to spend less on health care and good food. This means that going organic in the US will kill more than 13,000 people each year. Scaling these findings to the UK would indicate that while extra pesticides in conventional cause perhaps four deaths each year, the UK going completely organic would cost £22 billion per year, resulting in more than 2,000 extra deaths each year.

Organics is a rich world phenomenon, with 90 per cent of sales in North America and Europe. Despite a fivefold increase in sales over the past 15 years just 1 per cent of global cropland is organic. That’s because almost half of humanity depends on food grown with synthetic fertilisers, excluded by organic rules.

Norman Borlaug, who got the Nobel Prize for starting the Green Revolution, like to point out, that organic farming on a global scale would leave billions without food. “I don’t see two billion volunteers to disappear,” he said.

Essentially, organic food is rich people spending their extra cash to feel good. While that is just as valid as spending it on holidays, we should resist any implied moral superiority. Organics are not healthier or better for animals. To expand to any great scale would cost tens of billions of pounds while killing thousands. Indeed, a widespread organics revolution will increase environmental damage, and cut global forests.

When the designer Vivienne Westwood famously exclaimed that people who can’t afford organic food should “eat less” she may have had the best intentions. But she was also incredibly out of touch. The rest of the world needs more and cheaper food. That isn’t going to be organic.




Reducing and Managing Food Waste in Hotels

Our latest Know How Guide has been developed in collaboration with Considerate Hoteliers to help hoteliers and chefs understand how to manage and reduce food waste in hotels – what is the issue, how should it be addressed and what resources are on offer

This guide has been produced by the International Tourism Partnership (ITP) in collaboration with Considerate Hoteliers. The article draws on resources from organisations like WRAP that are available for the hospitality industry, with additional statistics and information on waste management separately referenced. It is designed for use by Corporate Responsibility and Environment Managers and Chefs. You can read the guide here on the site, or download it here.

What’s the problem with food waste?

Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tonnes — gets lost or wasted each year[1]
Every year, consumers in rich countries waste almost as much food as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa[2]
842 million people in the world do not have enough to eat[3]
When food rots it creates methane (CH4) which has 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide[4]
If food waste was a country, it would be the world’s 3rd largest emitter of CO2[5]
Every time food is wasted, the water, energy, time, manpower, land, fertilizer, fuel, packaging and MONEY put into growing, preparing, storing, transporting, cooking the food is wasted. This great video captures it perfectly
In short; reducing food waste helps you stop wasting money and a host of other resources. Here is an estimation of the carbon emissions created by common foods.

In the UK, food waste represents a cost to the hotel sector of £318 million each year including food procurement, labour, utilities and waste management costs, or £4,000 per tonne.

Estimated annual statistics show that UK hotels:

Produce 289,700 tonnes of waste each year, including 79,000 tonnes of food waste
Produce 9% of the total food waste across the hospitality and food service sector in the UK
Only 43% of all waste is recycled[6].
Statistics are similar in other countries. In Ireland, of the 750,000 tonnes of organic waste generated each year by businesses, over 350,000 comes from commercial businesses (e.g. food retail, hotels, food wholesale, restaurants, etc.) It has been estimated that each tonne of food waste in Ireland can cost between €2,000 – €5,000 – sometimes less, often times more.[7]

In the US, 68m tonnes of food waste are produced each year, with around 39.7m tonnes going to landfill or incineration. One third of this is from full and quick service (QSR) restaurants[8].

Why take action?

By taking a few simple steps to waste less and recycle more, and by working out the cost of food waste to the business, hotels can reap financial as well as environmental benefits. Read on and find out more.

Where is waste generated?

Hotels often say they waste very little food as the plates generally come back clean. However, food waste comes from a variety of sources;Food waste in hotels

Even in the best-run kitchens there will be some food waste. The priority is to reduce how much food is wasted in your property, before considering how best to dispose of unavoidable waste.

How to reduce food waste?

WRAP outlines 4 steps:

Step 1: Measure your food waste
Step 2: Develop an action plan to reduce food waste using the data collected, with targets, timescales and responsibilities
Step 3: Review progress on the plan each month
Step 4: Share your good work with staff, consumers and industry

The resources referenced below and a step-by-step online guide can all be found at WRAP’s Hospitality and Foodservice Online Resource centre. Based on material from Unilever, the resources are relevant to any hotel anywhere in the world.

Step 1: Measure your food waste

For a trial period, e.g. a week, start collecting food waste in three separate bins (one each for preparation, spoilage and plate waste), where appropriate, to understand where and why this waste arises. Weigh them daily to find out where the most food waste is being generated. This should include food that would otherwise have ended up in the sink disposal unit. Remember that this is going to present a challenge to staff to do things differently so preparation is key – make sure staff understand why you are doing this and get on board.

You can record this on a Food Waste Tracking Sheet (see below), available via WRAP or US EPA. For more detail, Unilever’s Wise Up On Waste is an app for professional kitchens to conveniently monitor and track food waste, including monitoring the composition of plate waste. We’d recommend you go this extra step as if you are wasting a lot of meat, this is costing you a lot of money!

Case study: The SRA and The Bingham. In the UK, the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) is running a scheme called Food Save to help hoteliers and restaurants understand and reduce their food waste.Waste frompreparation, spoilage and plate waste are separated and weighed for a month to identify sources of food waste. The Bingham Hotel piloted the scheme in spring 2014. GM Erick Kervaon reports that the first challenge was to get staff on board. Changing habits and getting people to do things differently can be a challenge; after all, many chefs just want to cook! Key to the success of the project at The Bingham was to present to staff at the start of the project to get them on board – not only with an environmental message but using the opportunity to engage staff in the business through their financial responsibility for reducing wastage. Empowering staff in this way and allowing them to share in the success by allocating part of the savings to a staff football tournament really helped engage staff. Now segregation of waste is business as usual and the restaurant at The Bingham is turning a higher profit.
Calculate the amount of food waste produced each year from the data collected. Multiply this figure by the cost per tonne (£4,000 in the UK) to find out how much this could be costing your business each year. Use actual data from food wasted and disposal costs if you are able to collect this.

Repeat this at least twice a year to measure your progress. This will enable the cost of food waste to be identified and for progress to be tracked over time.

Case study: Strattons is a small, independent, family-run hotel in Norfolk. In just one year (2010-11), the hotel managed to save over £16,000 by reducing food and packaging waste, increasing recycling to 98% and making savings in other areas such as good housekeeping and water use. One food waste initiative was to naturally dry coffee grounds and use for horticultural purposes, reducing food waste by around 332kg per year. Read more here
Step 2: Develop an action plan to reduce food waste using the data collected, with targets, timescales and responsibilities.

Your action plan should include;

Preventing spoilagewrap stock sheet

Review stock management and food delivery processes for food items with a short shelf life. Ensure stock is rotated as new deliveries come in (first in, first out). WRAP provides stock control sheets online
Store stock correctly at the right temperature, in the right packaging, labelled and with dates
Ordering and menu planning

Using some pre-prepared, frozen or dried ingredients can reduce wastage. And remember, you can freeze most foodstuffs – even eggs!
Be familiar with reservations forecasts and do not over-order or over-prepare. Is 20% extra a good buffer on a busy day? Can another 20% be kept frozen for contingencies? Track the menu for slower-moving dishes. Customers don’t need too many choices and keeping the menu simple reduces the possibility of waste.
Be imaginative with your menus! Consider what perishable ingredients or trimmings can be used in different ways, e.g. fish trimmings or bones for stock, bread for breadcrumbs or croutons, ingredients for pate & soups, etc., and plan menus accordingly to use these ingredients, e.g. by offering daily specials. And why not offer potatoes with skin on? Unilever’s Wise Up On Waste app has some handy tips for ‘repurposing’ ingredients. Excess preparation and ingredients close to their use-by date could be made available for staff meals.
Case study –The Lancaster, London: “Nose-to-tail” dining, the principle of using the whole animal to avoid waste, has recently been introduced at The Lancaster, London. Not only is this a great initiative to reduce food waste; it is an inventive commercial offering.
too good to waste Offer customers choice. That could be different portion sizes – a consumer survey showed that 41% of those surveyed blamed oversized portions for leaving food. Good portion control using standard measures will also help you keep the cost consistent. For smaller portions you could offer a refill/second helping – or options for side dishes or build their own dish so that they can order what they prefer and will not leave food on the plate. The main dish and sides are most likely to be left behind, with chips (fries) the most commonly left food (32%). Offer ‘doggy bags’/boxes for consumers to take home what they have not eaten, where appropriate – be careful to check local health and safety regulations. “83% of the public would ask for a doggy box but don’t think they can or are too embarrassed” (Sustainable Restaurant Association).
Case study: Greene King pubs in the UK have a range of different portion sizes. The Golden Years Menu caters for more mature guests, specifically tailored to satisfy lighter appetites, and two different children’s menus are offered; the Children’s Menu – suitable for children between 7 and 10 years, and the Juniors’ Menu – suitable for children under 7 years.
If running a buffet, some hotels have successfully used a ‘pay by weight’ system which enables customers to eat as much as they want but discourages them from taking too much. See this case study from Dubai. Others use signs to request that customers just take what they need, such as those from ‘Love Food Hate Waste’.
Engage your staff. The infographic in this article on Green Hotelier summarises the key steps to take
See the Love Food Hate Waste Resource Pack to see the consumer research referred to above and for great advice on engaging the customer.

Step 3: Review progress on the plan each month

Speak to staff and get their feedback on the progress being made. This will keep people involved and motivated. Measure the amount of waste produced regularly and work out how much money is being saved.

Step 4: Share your good work with staff, consumers and industry

Don’t forget to thank staff and keep them motivated. Rewards are excellent to recognise the efforts they have made.

Keep up-to-date on all the good practice being carried out by other businesses by looking online, e.g. the WRAP site or initiatives local to you (see the Further Reading list at the end of this Guide). Apply anything you learn to the plan and update it regularly.

Share your case studies with us at Considerate Hoteliers and on Green Hotelier – here’s how to contribute. On Twitter, use the hashtag #foodwaste to make sure others see your story, and to search for and link to relevant organisations.

You might also choose to get external recognition for your achievements through awards and certifications, such as the UK the Chartered Institute of Wastes Management (CIWM) Awards, Carbon Trust Waste Standard, as achieved by Whitbread, or by signing the Hospitality and Food Service Agreement – a voluntary agreement to support the sector in reducing waste and recycling more.

See the Love Food Hate Waste Resource Pack to see consumer research and some great advice on engaging the customer

Staff training and communication

Getting staff on board with your waste reduction and management strategy is key. Work out right from the start who to involve, and ensuring that together you make it work. It takes time to create new processes and habits so make sure staff know why you are doing what you are doing. See the case study on The Bingham above. Get their buy in. Make it easy. Train and retrain staff. It can be hard to get all staff together for training, so consider what alternatives you can provide. Whitbread’s ‘Say No to Landfill’ training modules are online so staff can do it at a time that suits them.

Case Study: At The Hyatt Regency London, The Churchill, four staff teams were asked to create short videos on waste handling. All four were played in the staff restaurant, to the amusement of associates who saw their senior managers ridiculing themselves. The success of this strategy was combining a clear message with a lot of fun which staff would talk about and remember.
Case Study: London Kings Cross Premier Inn was awarded the ‘Most Improved Recycler 2014’ award from Veolia. During the first 7 months of 2013, London Kings Cross contaminated their recycling waste streams on 27 separate occasions resulting in significant risk and cost to the business. Then incredibly from October 2013 all contamination suddenly stopped…… see below their success story and how they achieved their award!
The Issue… The team at London Kings Cross were experiencing many issues with their waste since the general to mixed recycling conversion programme was introduced. Contamination of waste streams were resulting in non-collections, which meant a significant waste build up that affected other key services for the hotel. A joint WHR and Veolia support site survey audit was carried out to see what steps could be put in place to solve the continued waste issues at site.
Two problems were quickly identified…
Housekeeping teams misunderstood what waste from their activities should be put into which bins.
There was also a need to increase this service provision at site by two extra lifts.
The steps taken to turn a negative into a positive…
Following on from extensive conversations, Veolia were able to increase the mixed recycling provision, preventing the waste build up from occurring over the weekend.
In order to move forward and correct the contamination issues, the site embarked on an extensive waste & recycling awareness education programme, including arranging for all team members to take the Academy on-line ‘Say No to Landfill’ module training.
In addition, it was identified that not only were the House keeping team contractors, but for the majority of them, English was not their first language. This was addressed by the waste team visiting the site to arrange to brief the house keeping team in their language. This was translated by their shift leader so that everyone on site knew what was expected and how the process worked.
The Outcome… Year to date, all contamination at site has stopped and this has resulted in a month by month improvement for the hotel. This is a direct result of the hotel manager’s drive and the team’s persistence and engagement with the Good Together waste programme.
Solutions for treatment and disposal of waste

The best, most cost-effective and environmentally friendly solution is to stop food becoming waste or surplus in the first place – being eaten is always the best option for food! However, food you cannot use does not always need to become waste. Distinguish between ‘surplus food’ and ‘waste’. Even the best-run kitchens generate some food waste, so what you can’t reduce, prioritise for treatment as per the above diagram.

Legislation and availability of local services will affect your choice of options so check locally and apply the best option according to the food recovery hierarchy above.

Optimisation – feed hungry people – food banks and collection

The best way to use excess food is to feed hungry people. Many charities around the world will collect excess food, including prepared food, to provide for the needy, though note there may be various legal and health and safety requirements to check with your legal team and with the charity in question. Many hotels and companies small and large, including Hilton Worldwide, have risen to the challenge

The process will depend on the market and capabilities of the food bank. Identify food banks or agencies that can accept prepared food and then identify hotels in the area they operate that might want to participate. The food bank or agency can then work with the hotel to determine the types of food they can take and the process for storing. In many cases it is easier to freeze and schedule regular (e.g. weekly) pick-ups. Some organisations may be able to pick up the same day and maintain the heated or cooled product directly to the end recipient but arranging logistics for small regular donations can be difficult. Note that the existing food banking infrastructure/economics is set up to maximize large volumes of non-perishable items from donors like grocers or manufacturers, so accommodating relatively smaller donations and perishable food can be challenging, but it is worth exploring and is a very rewarding activity.

To find food banks in your area, see The Global Food Banking Network and the following or search online.

This option is not available in many countries due to health and safety legislation. For example in Europe, the laws changed following the outbreak of mad cow disease which has been attributed to feeding animals waste food.

In some parts of the world, however, converting food waste to safe animal feed may soon be an option. Sealed Air, a global leader in cleaning, hygiene and packaging solutions, including food safety programs, has been leading several CSR programmes such as Soap For Hope and Linens For Life in the industry. They are now are piloting a scheme to collect food waste from hotels and convert it to dried food pellets for distribution to poor farmers as animal feed. The pilot takes place in Mauritius in November 2014 and it is hoped to roll this out to the Middle East, Africa and Asia markets.


Check online what services are available to help you recycle your food, such as through the Food Waste Network in the UK

Recycling – composting

Composting is nature’s way of recycling. In this process, organic waste, such as food waste and garden clippings, is biodegraded and turned into valuable fertilizer. In its simplest form, the advantages to composting are twofold; it reduces the amount of solid waste in your trash and, when used in a garden, it fertilizes the soil. If your property has gardens, on-site composting may be an option, alternatively, seek a composting contractor in your area.

To find composting services in the US & Canada, see
For health and safety issues in the UK
Further background information is available at WRAP, Green Hotelier, AH&LA and US EPA
Composting case studies: Soneva Fushi, Four Seasons Philadelphia, Healesville Hotel Melbourne and Copacabana Palace Rio all compost
Energy recovery from food waste

Anerobic digestion

Anaerobic digestion (AD) involves the breakdown of biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen by micro-organisms called methanogens. The process of AD provides a source of renewable energy, since the food waste is broken down to produce biogas (a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide), which is suitable for energy production. The biogas can be used to generate electricity and heat to power on-site equipment and, where the infrastructure exists, the excess electricity can be exported to the National Grid.

Check if collection for AD is possible in your area. For more information and to find UK AD sites, click here or see the UK Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas Association (ADBA)

Biofuel from waste cooking oil

In many places it is a legal requirement that oils and fats from frying processes are collected. Oils can be put to great use by being recycled into biofuels for vehicles. The volumes produced by a hotel can be significant, for example The Savoy London’s kitchen oil recycling scheme to biofuel averages around 1,800 litres per quarter. Many commercial services exist, many which pay for fats, so check what’s available in your locality.

Case study: At Le Manoir au Quat’ Saisons, recycles waste fats (oils and butters from cooking) using a local company called Arrow Oil, who supply Fat Bins (Le Manoir and Arrow Oil split the cost of purchasing the bins 50-50). These are stored in a separate outdoor refrigerated unit to stop unwanted smells, leakages and pests and are collected on a weekly basis. The fat is recycled into biofuel; Arrow Oil then gives us 25p per litre [in 2012] back. The biofuel currently fuels Arrow Oils transportation. Le Manoir comment; “This project was a great success…and results already show a great saving from recycling the fats. It also has eased our manual handling techniques and is a cleaner more efficient system of storage. In 2011 17,290 litres of cooking oil was reclaimed from Le Manoir, this gave our Eco Brigade & staff welfare fund £2247.70 + VAT. Some of this money has then been invested back into kick starting our conversion of our light bulbs into LED bulbs.”
Other technologies

Organic waste disposal systems are available which convert food waste to water, such as this one used by the Hilton Fort Lauderdale. Dehydrators may be used to extract water from food waste to reduce the weight for landfill and fuel to transport.

Optimising your food recycling programme

Get the bins right. Incorrect types and numbers of bins can lead to the wrong waste going in the wrong bin, such as recycling going in with general waste. Adjusting the size of bins or frequency that they are collected can also save money.

Choose the most appropriate waste management solution for your needs. When entering into a contract for food waste recycling, or other waste collections, make sure that the service meets your requirements and won’t incur additional costs. Make sure you ask the right questions.

Ask the waste management contractor for your data. Having data on how much waste is going to landfill, being recycled or going to AD will help to understand current levels of recycling. This information can then be used to identify further opportunities. Monitor how this changes on a regular basis.

Do the maths. Recycling waste doesn’t attract landfill tax and may cost less. If you are already recycling packaging, it’s worth speaking to the waste contractor about other services including food waste collections.

Get staff on your side. Engage staff to recycle more by helping them to understand which waste goes in which bin. It is key for staff to ‘buy in’ to initiatives so that they see the benefits. This will encourage participation and help increase recycling rates.

Work together. Consider working with neighbouring businesses to procure food waste and recycling collections, where appropriate. There may be efficiencies/economies of scale to be made by working together. Where larger scale is needed, see what you can do on a national or industry scale.

The Hospitality Carbon Reduction Forum in the UK is urging hospitality companies to collaborate to optimise cost and the volume of food waste that can be sent to AD processing.

More detail is available and a step by step approach via WRAP’s Food Waste Recycling for your Business, including;

a cost of recycling calculator
questions to ask waste disposal contractors
case studies, detailing issues such as managing food waste in small to Michelin starred kitchens
Resources, such as signage and posters, briefing notes to staff,
…and a lot more!


Lucozade Ribena Suntory assists on blackcurrant research project

currant-896233_1280Lucozade Ribena Suntory has contributed to a £220,000 international research project, which is aiming to turn blackcurrant pomace into food for human consumption.

Blackcurrant pomace is a rich source of polyphenols and fibre. Food scientists at the University of Huddersfield in the UK are seeking methods of introducing it into bread, muffins, biscuits and breakfast foods as a means of enriching the fibre content of foods by up to 15%.

Lucozade Ribena Suntory has provided samples of pomace – the by-product left behind after the blackcurrants have been pressed for juice – to support the researchers in their contribution to the Europe-wide Berrypom research project.

The goal is to exploit the nutritional and economic value of pomace, which consists of the skins, pulp, seeds, and stems of berries after juicing. It can account for up to 30% of the product, but has so far had limited use and is often discarded. But it is a potentially rich source of polyphenols and fibre and therefore researchers in five European countries – plus New Zealand – have come together for Berrypom, which seeks to find methods of introducing it into cereal products, including bread, muffins, biscuits and breakfast foods.

“We are aiming for an increase in fibre content of up to 15%,” explained Dr Vassilis Kontogiorgos from the University of Huddersfield. “Except for the colour you can’t tell the difference.”

Early findings are that flavour is hardly affected by the introduction of pomace, but bread and muffins can acquire a dark colouration. Therefore, ways to lighten the colour of the blackcurrant by-product are now being explored.