Top tips for reducing waste in your restaurant

Food waste is a huge problem in the restaurant industry, but there are some simple ways in which you can reduce the amount of waste generated by your business. Not only is this better for the environment, but it’s also better for your bottom line.

Reduce portions

If you regularly find customers are leaving large quantities of food on their plates uneaten and you end up throwing away half a meal’s worth of food at a time, reduce your portions. You might be proud of your large portion sizes, and might, in fact, be known for it, but it is incredibly wasteful to serve more than most people want to eat.

You could always offer a super-sized version of some of your most popular dishes for those with a bigger appetite. The fact is that millions of us regularly eat too much and slightly smaller portions are unlikely to be unreasonable to most customers.

If you sell pre-packaged dishes, for example in a display freezer such as those from, present food attractively without over-loading containers.

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Create new dishes

According to Love Food Hate Waste, millions of tons of food are wasted each year in the UK. Take a look at some of their clever recipes that use up leftovers and adapt them to use your kitchen’s surplus ingredients.

Offer tailored meals

Do you find the majority of your customers leave their salad or veg? Encourage customers to ask for items to be left off if they don’t want them. Salad is one of the most neglected foodstuffs on plates, especially when it accompanies something like a burger and fries. If customers know they’re not going to eat certain items from a dish, encourage them to ask for them to be left off.

Rethink your dishes

If you find yourself regularly throwing out certain ingredients because you simply can’t use them up in time, it might be time to re-think your menu. If not enough people are ordering certain dishes to make it feasible to keep offering them, consider not offering them as a regular part of your menu. Alternatively, if you always sell out of certain dishes and notice that customers rarely leave anything on their plates when ordering these meals, see if you can incorporate the same elements into other dishes too.


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