J500 Media and the Environment

Reducing Your Restaurant’s Waste Size by justinlev7

Those who work at a restaurant develop a  relationship with their food. It is their capital and their craft; it provides them their weekly paycheck. Every dish they create is almost like a child to them.

A Restaurant Kitchen

While you prepare food, it is nobody’s but yours. Music blares from radio speakers as you chop onions and tomatoes and slice meat and fry potatoes. Prepping becomes habitual, and you sometimes even forget that you’re dealing with food.   If a sliced apple or onion falls on the floor, you don’t think twice about throwing it away. I once thawed an entire brick of ground beef too early, and had to throw all three pounds of it away.

I’m not the only one. Food waste in the restaurant business is relatively common. After all, when there’s a full freezer of fresh meats, cheeses, and produce at your very finger tips, why worry yourself over old spilled meat? You certainly can’t pick it up off the floor and serve it to your customers. The three-second-rule does not apply in a restaurant kitchen.

But, outside the kitchen, there are whole families who must  line up in the cold for soup and a chunk of bread. They may not have the means to buy a pound of ground beef, let alone to thoughtlessly throw it away on a whim. Why should we value our food any less, just because we have more of it? If anything, restaurant workers should value their food more. Make sure your restaurant buys sustainable produce… and DON’T WASTE IT.

Justin Leverett is ready to take your order, sir!


3 Comments so far
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I worked in a piano bar that served appetizers and homemade pizzas. We also catered weddings and other events. I know we were guilty of wasting some food but most of the time we would hand out food that was close to expiring. The staff, myself included, would live off of leftovers from catering jobs. Our regulars always looked forward to the evenings that included free food with their spirits.

Comment by mackenzies09

One thing that all of us could do is bring Tupperware containers to restaurants to take our leftovers home in. Most restaurants use Styrofoam boxes that can’t be reused. It’s difficult to remember (kind of like reusable shopping bags), but if restaurants offered an incentive like grocery stores do, it might work.

Comment by janiec52

Yeah, I remember dearly the joys of eating my restaurant’s left-over food. Plus, I was lucky enough to work somewhere that served food I never got tired of! I miss it to this day (especially the falafel sandwiches! mmm)

Comment by justinl7

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