Blog Post

A recent blog post by Spoiler Alert predicts the top three trends expected to make it easier for businesses to manage food inventory and prevent waste in 2018.

‘Root-to-Stem’ and ‘Nose-to-Tail’ Strategies

The first trend is related to the source reduction of food waste, which the EPA ranks as the top priority for reducing the amount of food that goes to landfills. Of particular note are ‘root-to-stem’ or ‘nose-to-tail’ cooking methods which emphasize the importance of utilizing the entire plant or animal during preparation to cut down on waste.

Here are some innovative source reduction ideas that Spoiler Alert recommends for different industry sectors:

  • Manufacturers can develop partnerships with other organizations that can utilize manufacturing byproducts that would otherwise be discarded. Many food byproducts may be suitable for use directly as an ingredient by another manufacturer.
  • Distributors can include imperfect produce or upcycled foods in their offerings, and champion ‘root-to-stem’ techniques when working with purchasers.
  • Retailers have the unique opportunity to promote food waste reduction strategies both upstream, by working with their suppliers, and downstream, by educating their customers.

RecyclingWorks in Massachusetts is developing best management practices for source reduction of food waste in commercial kitchens, which will be posted to the RecyclingWorks website soon.

Food Waste Awareness Among Consumers

Conscientious consumers are demanding greater accountability and transparency across the food and beverage industry. Beyond satisfying customer demands, sustainable practices, like reducing food waste, have been shown to improve employee retention, productivity, and engagement.

New Technologies Helping to Combat Waste

New developments in technology are rapidly transforming both the food and waste industries. RecyclingWorks has previously reported on the Spoiler Alert software platform which helps food service businesses track and donate unsold inventory. In the waste industry, new composting technologies, depackaging equipment for packaged food material, and anaerobic digesters, are providing additional food waste generators with access to sustainable organics recycling options.

RecyclingWorks in Massachusetts provides resources for businesses and institutions such as guidance on source reduction, food donation, and source separation of food scraps in commercial kitchens. To speak to a recycling and food waste diversion expert or to learn more about our technical assistance services, call the RecyclingWorks hotline: (888) 254-5525 or email us at