Sustainability in the food industry - key tips
Sustainability in the food industry – key tips
Global warning is a crisis that has been majorly influenced by human activities. However most of the time we are unaware of the harm we are causing to the environment. With advancements in technology and the spread of awareness people are becoming more and more aware of the effect their actions have on the environment. They are doing whatever they can ‘however small’ to try and do their bit for the planet. This is particularly evident in the food industry where there has been a massive increase in the popularity of things such as veganism, recyclable packaging and overall environmental awareness.
Key Tips to run your food business sustainably.
- Compostable packaging
Whether you have food products that sell in stores or are running a restaurant, there is an opportunity for you to use compostable packaging. It is now readily available thanks to companies such as down2earth.ie and jfkdisposables.ie who are doing great work in this field. Although it can be slightly more expensive that standard packaging it is certainly worth the investment as companies who are more sustainable have a competitive advantage.
- Paper Straws
Plastic Straws are gaining more and more negative attention in recent years. With online videos of them getting stuck up a tortoises nose and taking over our oceans people are finally getting fed up or them. It’s looking like 2019 will finally see a serious reduction in the amount of plastic straws used worldwide. This is largely down to the invention of paper straws, which are 100% biodegradable and are now easily accessible to most restaurants and shops.
- Use LEAN programmes / consultant
LEAN consultants will come in to your business and examine it in detail. Their main goal is to save money for your business, however they will also advise you on how to be more sustainable. There are lots of great LEAN consultants out there.
- Shop local or grow your own
Consumers are becoming more and more concerned with food miles. Which is how far your food travels from the time it is produced to the time it is on your plate. The less food miles, the less fuel used, the better for the environment. If you buy all of your products locally or even better can grow your own you will have a competitive advantage over places who import produce from abroad.
Lidl are one of the first supermarkets leading the way in their attempts to be more sustainable. Last year they announced they were removing all non recycling packaging from their fruit and veg range. They also got rid of disposable plates, cups and cutlery from their stores. It is only a matter of time now before the rest of the big supermarkets follow suit, with Tesco recently making progress too.
Many companies, particularly SMEs overlook sustainability when setting up their brand but when managed correctly, running your business sustainably will not only have positive effects for you, but also for the environment.