Even in 2021, food waste is still a major issue. But what are the best ways to reduce food waste and how do you maintain a successful food waste management plan? Read on to learn how to reduce waste in food production and how effective food processing equipment can help.
- Why we need to reduce food waste
- How to reduce waste in food production
Why we need to reduce food waste in the food industry
Every year, it’s estimated that 2.2 million tonnes of food waste are disposed of by the commercial and industrial sector. Pair this with the 3.1 million tonnes thrown out by Australian consumers, and the total cost to the Australian economy is $20 billion (each year).
Beyond the economic cost, excessive food waste significantly impacts the environment – not just from the energy and water used to produce the food, but the packaging that the food is thrown out in. All of this increases greenhouse gas emissions and the amount of waste in landfill. This is why it’s so critical that food manufacturers learn how to reduce waste in food production.
How to reduce waste in food production: 5 tips
1. Reduce the amount of trimmings/off-cuts
In the food industry, one of the biggest culprits of food wastage is excess trimmings/off-cuts, especially in meat processing. So in learning how to reduce waste in the food industry, you need to turn to meat processing equipment that’s going to offer you high yields and precision cuts.
For this, we can’t recommend Grasselli enough. With a wide range of skinning machines, industrial meat slicers and more, their machines will ensure you get the most out of your meat so there is less waste.
2. Improve your production line
Another way to reduce food waste is to optimise your food production line. Food that is under/over thawed or under/over weight, for example, can lead to excess food spoilage.
If you regularly temper food in your production line, you should look to AMtek Microwaves. Not only will these tempering machines maximise your yields, they’ll also improve product quality in every batch by reducing drip loss. And if you own a ready-made meal business or need to accurately portion beef, port and poultry, you can’t go past Grasselli. Their weight control slicing technology offers precision portioning at high production volumes, minimising waste and give-away.
3. Separate packaging from product
In the food processing industry, some food waste is inevitable. However, your damaged or expired product doesn’t have to go straight to landfill. With the right equipment, you can separate the packaging from the product, so they can both be recycled separately.
Sepamatic’s soft belt separator machines are a great example of this. As well as being used in a wide range of applications, these machines can separate organics from packaging and remove soft content from cardboard packaging.
4. Equipment maintenance
How else can companies reduce food waste? By routinely checking their equipment for any technical faults. Product jams or equipment breakdowns can result in significant food loss and waste – especially if it’s a recurring issue. So, take the time to invest in some food processing maintenance. This will not only ensure your machinery has a long and healthy life, but will reduce your waste in the long run.
5. Improve food safety culture
Food safety and reducing food loss actually go hand-in-hand. Without proper food safety practises, such as sanitisation and correct food storage, large quantities of food must be thrown away each year. This not only impacts the environment, but your bottom line. To combat this, you need to be sure you have a strong food safety culture in place.
Learn more: How To Improve Food Safety Culture In Your Processing Plant
Reducing food waste in food manufacturing companies doesn’t have to be complicated, and FPE is here to help you along the way. If you have any questions about how to reduce waste in food production or need assistance with your equipment, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team.