Can Unilever Unite Restaurants Against Waste?

A recent survey found that 80 percent of U.S. restaurant customers were concerned by the amount of food being tossed at restaurants and cafeterias. But shouldn’t it be 100 percent?

Either way, it’s nice to know that Unilever, who commissioned the study, has launched the United Against Waste campaign to get restaurateurs…united against waste.

Once restaurateurs sign up for the initiative, they receive decals to put on their doors and information to help them trim their waste. They can also find plenty of tips online, a forum for sharing best practices, and a chance to request a one-on-one consultation.

And in due time, the United Against Waste site will include a list of participating restaurants that have committed to reducing their food waste. Let’s hope it’s a long list.

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  1. Cheawon Pearl Im
    Posted December 16, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    It is hard for me to understand why a transnational company whose agenda is to sell more food to us seems more concerned about food waste than the New York City government. The survey result shows that 80% of people who eat out are concerned about food waste, and in order to make a difference, restaurants are voluntarily signing up for this campaign called “United Against Waste.” Think about how much more effective this type of program can be if the government makes it a legal duty for restaurants to participate in source separation disposal system and pay for their food waste. It can be one of the most powerful motivations for reducing waste. I think the DSNY should seriously consider adopting “pay-as-you-throw” system starting with commercial food service providers in order to develop a sustainable environmental future for this city. Meanwhile, they should work on building more food waste processing plants and come up with ideas for running the program as effectively as possible.

  2. Posted December 16, 2011 at 6:26 pm | Permalink


    Yes, you would think that providing incentives for waste reduction (like pay-as-you-throw) would be a slam dunk. Or that there would be more of a municipal effort to compost or use anaerobic digestion to keep food waste out of the waste stream. But maybe it’ll just take more lobbying for such changes from people was eloquent as you, Cheawon.

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