Brooke Weston Academy is cutting down on food waste and introducing a range of wooden and compostable resources in its restaurant to enable it to be as environmentally friendly and efficient as possible.
Catering Manager Dale Campbell, and Operations Leader Claire Allsopp, collaborated to source affordable new items that include compostable salad boxes and sandwich containers. Existing single use plastic cutlery is being replaced with wooden versions that are compostable and ethically sourced.
The new range of cups has a core made of sugar cane rather than plastic, which means they can be composted and, during phase two of the project, they will be collected in special bins and sent back for economic recycling.
In order to cut down on food waste staff also closely monitored the types and quantities of food that were regularly thrown away. There has been an overhaul of the menu to reduce those items, meaning that wastage, and, consequently the number of bins used in the restaurant, will be reduced.
Mr Campbell said: ‘It has taken quite a lot of work to source the materials and choose the right ones. I am sure that students and staff will be pleased with the changes, and although the packaging has changed we’ll still be supplying the same high quality of food and drink.’
Mrs Allsopp said: ‘We have worked hard to identify where we can make the most efficient changes, so that we can offer the same high quality service but at a reduced cost to the environment, not only in terms of food wastage but packaging. The amazing thing is the cups are individually numbered so you could find out where the tree came from and whether another tree has been planted to replace it!’
Principal Pete Kirkbride said: ‘This initiative has been introduced as a direct response to staff and students’ concerns about single use plastics. The introduction of these new materials has enabled us to address their concerns swiftly and cost effectively. We will be closely monitoring the impact of this project and are always open to introducing new ideas to enhance our areas of operation.’