ISS Achieves Remarkable Milestone in Sustainable Food Service, Cuts Global Food Waste by 30%
Sep 27 2023
In a groundbreaking stride towards sustainable food service, ISS has made substantial headway in its global sustainability goals, successfully reducing food waste by a significant 30% from its 2019 baseline. This noteworthy achievement firmly positions ISS on course to attain its ambitious target of slashing food waste by 50% before 2027. In addition to this achievement, ISS has taken a significant step in fulfilling its commitment to the World Resource Institute's Cool Food Pledge by curbing greenhouse gas emissions associated with the food it serves, reducing emissions by nearly 5% per 1,000 kcal.
The attainment of these milestones owes itself to a range of initiatives adopted by ISS, including optimised food procurement, meticulously planned menus, and a heightened focus on reshaping consumer behaviour patterns. These measures have acted as catalysts, propelling ISS toward its goal of achieving a 50% reduction in food waste by 2027.
Hamish Cook, Head of Group Food Services at ISS, attributes these commendable achievements to the company's global food sustainability program, which was deployed worldwide at the beginning of 2022. Cook elaborated, saying, "A pivotal element of our program was to intensify our focus on innovation and harness the power of data and insights across our global operations. Our partnership with technology company Winnow has played a pivotal role in this endeavour. By integrating Winnow's Artificial Intelligence solutions into our restaurants and kitchens, our chefs gain valuable insights into plate waste and consumer patterns, enabling them to optimise food production and portion sizes, thereby significantly reducing food and plastic waste."
Through this partnership, ISS is now delivering an annualised collective saving of 985,000 tonnes of food waste for its customers, equivalent to saving an astonishing 2,463,000 meals and curbing CO2 emissions by 4,200 tonnes.
Sustainable Food Choices for Climate and Health
In line with its commitment to the World Resource Institute's Cool Food Pledge, ISS has set its sights on reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2030. With an impressive 4.8% reduction per 1,000 kcal from a 2019 baseline, the company is making substantial progress. ISS plans to accelerate these efforts by expanding its offerings of plant-based menu options. Hamish Cook emphasised, "Our top priority is to encourage our customers to make more sustainable choices, benefiting both the climate and personal health. This entails enhancing our innovative recipe development, menu concepts, and comprehensive culinary training."
As part of this initiative, ISS is collaborating with Unilever to incorporate suggestions from WWF's and Unilever's 'Future 50 foods'—a selection of 50 nutritious foods with a minimal environmental footprint—into recipes served worldwide.
Promoting Sustainable Behaviour
Beyond bolstering the culinary skills of its chefs to reduce waste and CO2 emissions, ISS is launching awareness campaigns at customer sites and its own locations. Hamish Cook expressed, "Ultimately, addressing the climate challenge requires collective action and unwavering awareness. This week, we are lending our support to the UN-led International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste through our 'Love Food and Stop Waste' campaign. Restaurants worldwide will share recipes and tips for preparing delicious meals with minimal food waste. Most importantly, we encourage everyone to make every day a 'Love Food and Stop Waste' Day—always optimising the use of food and materials, minimising waste, and inspiring those around you to do the same."
ISS's Global Net Zero Commitment
As a global company serving millions of customers annually, ISS acknowledges its responsibility to the planet, its people, and the communities it serves. As part of its commitment to sustainability, ISS has pledged to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions within scope 1 and 2 by 2030 and to attain full-scope net zero emissions by 2040, encompassing its entire supply chain.
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