Some of the UK’s most forward thinking foodservice companies have united – for the first time ever – to launch a powerful sustainability initiative, set to revolutionise how the industry shares green knowledge, guidelines and best practice examples.
Guest article: Bidvest Foodservice
A recent survey revealed the continued need for foodservice operators to drive sustainability within their business, responding to the 83% of consumers that said sustainability directly affects their dining choices.
This has been easier said than done in the past, as the ethical landscape continues to evolve with new Government legislation and changing consumer needs making sustainable business choices a real challenge for caterers to navigate.
plate2planet is the new ‘green alliance’ between seven of the UK’s key foodservicebusinesses - Unilever, Premier Foods, Delifrance UK, Vegware, Planet First and Jacobs Douwe Egberts, powered by Bidvest Foodservice who is driving the initiative – and marks a step change towards a truly collaborative approach to the sustainability challenges faced by the industry.
Tom Hunt, author of The Natural Cook and chef-patron of Poco, a restaurant recycling and composting 95-100% of their waste, is supporting the new campaign and commented: “As sustainability moves from being a marketing fad to becoming a core business objective it is important that it starts to be seen as a common goal.”
“That means the entire food industry must work together, if we are to achieve real change. In bringing together so many brands under a single initiative, plate2planet has the real potential to act as a catalyst to driving understanding and engagement across the entire sector. It will be very interesting to watch where plate2planet takes us.”
The group, dubbed ‘the sustainability seven’, are pooling their resources to offer operators across all channels the opportunity to share ideas, inspiration, and expertise via a ‘one-stop-shop’ digital platform. The platform provides a forum for likeminded caterers, providing access to useful and practical information for those looking for help and solutions including how to guides, inspiring case studies, guidance on regulations, handy tools, and inspiring supply chain stories. In fact everything businesses need whether they are looking to generate savings, achieve zero to landfill, source sustainably or plan their own CSR journey.
"Our customers, and those of our plate2planet partners, care deeply about sustainability and operators across the industry are taking measures to tackle the challenges," said Shirley Duncalf, Head of Sustainability at Bidvest Foodservice.
"Caterers are looking to drive successful green initiatives that truly add value to their own community, customers and their bottom line but many of them tell us they do not have the resources to research trends, find new suppliers or dissect complicated reports and Government documents. As a result, sustainable change is inching forward rather than propelling."
“We have listened to these concerns and responded to the need for better access. As a collective we have a wealth of knowledge that is unparalleled. Our aim, in sharing these resources in a single space, is to support the entire industry to make small but effective changes which can ultimately have a huge impact on a global scale, and on profit margins. Our message is that by working together we can truly enact positive change.”
To find out more about the initiative go to www.plate2planet.co.uk where you will find a wide range of resources to bring the initiative to life!
You’ll also find Bidvest Foodservice on Twitter @BidvestFoodUK
To find out more about Beacon and how we can help you become more sustainable through the help of our supply partners, please click here.
 Sustainable Restaurant Association, Food Made Good, September 2015