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How River Cottage Canteens reduced food waste by a third using Winnow’s smart technology

Posted by David Jackson / 7-Dec-2015

How River Cottage Canteens reduced food waste by a third using Win

Waste warrior Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall and technology startup Winnow team up to fight food waste at prestigious Winchester restaurant.

Hugh-Fearnley-Whittingstall.jpg Food Waste is high up on the national agenda following the BBC series ‘Hugh’s War on Waste’ and over 288,000 people have signed the #wastenot petition campaigning for supermarkets to take action.  

River Cottage teamed up with Winnow on a pilot project to cut food waste in the Winchester restaurant. Winnow’s smart meter helps chefs measure and manage food waste by recording what’s thrown in the bin.

Using Winnow’s smart meter the team at River Cottage Canteen Winchester have seen pre-consumer food waste reduced by ⅓:

  • Over two months the team have been able to reduce food waste by over 1/3
  • That's 6 tonnes per year saved from going in the bin, the equivalent of four Toyota Priuses saved from landfill every year

In the kitchen the team used the Winnow system to create a league table to foster friendly competition between staff. Data from Winnow’s reporting highlighted where changes could be made to operations.

  • Citrus peels are being now being salted and preserved or candied
  • Burger buns have been reduced in size and the recipe adjusted
  • Unrecoverable vegetable trimmings are now collected by a local organic farm to be turned into compost

Winnow’s data shows that within two months food waste has been reduced by a third by value. The learnings from the pilot have now been shared with the other three River Cottage Canteens who are in the process of making similar changes.

Responding to the success of the pilot, Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall said "Food waste is an issue that affects all kitchens, and inevitably we're often too busy to understand what is being wasted and why. Winnow’s smart meter has helped us measure where food is wasted in our restaurant, and quickly points us to areas we can make changes. The River Cottage team was quick to buy into the project, and to feel the benefits: in less than 3 months, we've already reduced waste by 1/3 by value. And we’re hoping to drive waste down even further. It’s clear that many others in our sector could benefit from using Winnow to reduce their waste and costs. It’s a real no-brainer for the hospitality industry."

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Photo credit: Rawpixel via Unsplash

Topics: Case Study

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