By: Tamás Szallabek
From: VIMOSZ (Hungarian Hospitality Employers’ Association)
Berlin – United Against Waste (UAW) marked its 11th anniversary with a renewed commitment to combat food waste and advance climate protection measures. The decision was made during the 11th annual general meeting held in Berlin, hosted by United Against Waste in collaboration with the Federal Association of the German Food Industry (BVE). Representatives from 55 partner companies in the food industry gathered to reflect on a dynamic year for the organisation.
The association aims to equip the industry for future challenges, with Klaus Ridderbusch, the longstanding Chairman, emphasizing, “All solutions we have collectively developed since 2012 actively contribute to climate protection and are more crucial than ever.” For Ridderbusch, UAW remains at the forefront of the fight against food waste.
Since its inception, UAW has initiated numerous projects, including the development of nationally recognized methods, publication of benchmarks, and the sharing of knowledge. Trosten von Borstel, the CEO of the association highlights, “Our DNA is lived sustainability. Reducing food waste not only conserves valuable resources but also mitigates CO2 emissions.”
Borstel urges industry-wide participation, stating, “After years of learning and growth, it is time to activate the entire industry with our unique expertise.” UAW focuses on utilizing digital tools to disseminate knowledge on food waste issues and various ways to reduce food waste in all gastronomic establishments, from corporate cafeterias to hospitals, senior care facilities, schools, hotels, and central kitchens.
The increasing prices of food and the impact of climate change are expected to remain pressing issues in the coming years. UAW believes it is imperative for all companies to address these challenges, urging even more concerted efforts. The call for sustainable food practices, whether regional, seasonal, vegetarian, or plant-based, is emphasized.
However, as Borstel provocatively questions, “What is the use of vegan, seasonal, regional organic burger if it ends up in the trash?” The unanimous agreement among attendees is that the reduction of food waste in every gastronomic establishment must have the highest priority, as it is key to sustainable business practices.
The successful work of Competence Centre for the Prevention of Food Waste in Out-of-Home Catering (KAHV), led by UAW since January 2022 is also a milestone of the national food waste reduction actions. The KAHV has seen a significant increase in participating businesses, with 223 establishments committing to the National Strategy to Reduce Food Waste.
The original article can be found here.