Teamwork, powered by AI is driving down food waste at Iberostar Dominican Republic up

Posted by Maria Sanu / 3-Oct-2022


Iberostar’s partnership with Winnow brings cutting-edge technology to the Iberostar Selection Bavaro in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic slashing food waste by 35% and saving 300,000 meals a year from the bin; the equivalent food cost savings are $290,000.  

Iberostar, the global hotel group behind some of the world’s finest luxury destinations, announces the deployment of Winnow’s Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) solution Winnow Vision to drive down food waste. The project is currently in its pilot phase and is already yielding fantastic results, with Winnow being deployed across multiple restaurants at the Iberostar Selection Bavaro in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. 

This initiative is a part of Iberostar’s “Wave of Change” sustainability program, which promotes responsible tourism, circular economy thinking and the protection of coastal ecosystems. Their ambition is to send zero waste to landfill by 2025. With 60% of the hotel’s waste being food, reducing food waste is an integral part of this goal. Food waste accounts for up to 10% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, combating it is necessary to fight climate change. 

“An increasing number of our customers prioritise sustainability, and we are committed to providing them with the best experience possible, which is why cutting food waste is important to us”. 

Helena Santos, General Manager, Iberostar Selection Bavaro

The work done by this resort demonstrates that teamwork has the power to fight climate change on a global scale. By reducing food waste, the hotel successfully prevented 120 tonnes of CO2e from being released every year, the equivalent to carbon sequestered by 1,800 trees grown for 10 years. The collaboration between the team members is the driving force that powers the Waves of Change initiative.

Iberostar Selection Bavaro has reinvested their savings into improving their food quality, the team realised they were wasting 15% of the croissants produced, they are now making fewer croissants, but of a higher quality resulting in no waste. 

“As a chef, I work every day with one of the most valuable resources that we have: food. It’s such an important part of our guests’ vacations and it’s a shame to let it go to waste. With Winnow, I can become part of the solution to global food waste while continuing to deliver a great gastronomic experience.” 

Angel Arroyo, Regional Chef, Iberostar Selection Bavaro


Here are tips straight from the Iberostar Selection Bavaro team:

  1. Producing food in smaller quantities helps in maintaining high quality. Using data we can understand exactly how much to produce to minimise waste. Moreover, Winnow quick next-day reports give us actionable insights that can be implemented swiftly. 
  2. Winnow’s reports provide a complete view of food waste across the production journey. Helping us understand which foods are most popular with customers and where food is produced but never gets to the table. 
  3. Images of food waste enabled us to validate data for reporting and make more informed decisions.  

Food waste is an age-old problem for the hospitality sector. Kitchens are busy, and measuring food waste accurately is challenging. Historically teams simply didn’t know how much they were wasting or which items were being wasted. 

Winnow’s technology helps solve this problem by making it easy to record food waste accurately, giving chefs analytics to pinpoint where waste can be reduced. The technology works in a similar way to a driverless car, with a camera positioned over bins capturing images of food waste. Over time the system learns to recognise items automating much of the recording process giving accurate data with little effort. 

Iberostar has set out a clear and ambitious vision to become waste free by 2025, and we are delighted to support them on this journey. We hope that their leadership will spur action across the sector that’s badly needed if we are to meet the Sustainable Development Goal of halving food waste worldwide by 2030.


Topics: Case Study

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