Effective waste management solutions that deliver greater efficiency and cost savings to the leisure sector

Leisure, tourism and hospitality provide millions of jobs and are vital elements to the UK’s economy. Attracting over 30 million overseas visitors per year, the tourism industry alone brings with it, spend more than £16 billion per annum. The price of tourism to the UK is impactful environmentally and socially and organisations need to address their responsibilities and obligations to minimise environmental impact and resource use if the industry in England is to continue to remain sustainable and thrive.

 The leisure, tourism and hospitality sectors are notorious for producing huge volumes of waste and it is globally recognised that recycling and recovery rates from these industries could be managed better. Organisations are far more aware of their responsibilities and objectives to achieve improvements in environmental performance and of course, cost reduction is always at the top of the agenda!

The way many organisations from these sectors dispose of waste in general mixed waste containers makes it difficult to pinpoint the true cost of waste and therefore, highlight areas for improvement. For the sector to reduce its carbon footprint or save money, it is important to establish what the waste consists of.

This kind of knowledge would afford the leisure, tourism and hospitality sectors the valuable information it needs to address the problems associated with legacy waste management structures currently in place and subsequently make changes that could lead to significant cost savings and improvements in resource efficiency.

All businesses, not for profit organisations and public-sector bodies must take all reasonable steps to separate dry recyclable materials. According to the 2013 WRAP report ‘An overview of waste in the UK hospitality and food service sector’, the total amount of waste, including food, packaging and other ‘non-food’ waste produced each year by UK Hospitality and Food Service (HaFS) outlets is 2.87 million tonnes.

Only 46% of this is recycled, sent to Anaerobic Digestion, or composted. 920,000 tonnes of food is wasted at outlets every year, 75% of this wasted food could have been consumed.

Some facts about the report include:

  • The amount of food that is wasted each year in the UK is equivalent to 1.3 billion meals, or one in six of the 8 billion meals served each year.
  • On average 21% of food waste arises from spoilage; 45% from food preparation and 34% from consumer plates.
  • 12% of all food waste is recycled.
  • 3 million tonnes of packaging (for food and drink as well as other non-food items used within HaFS) and 0.66 million tonnes of other ‘non-food’ wastes are also discarded, that includes items such as disposable kitchen paper and newspapers.
  • 62% of packaging and other ‘non-food’ waste is recycled. The highest level of recycling is for glass and cardboard.
  • 56% of packaging and other ‘non-food’ waste that is thrown away could have been readily recycled.

While the analysis of waste production is becoming the norm in terms of household waste, analysing business waste is a different entity that poses logistical challenges and boundaries in terms of confidentiality, health and safety and more. GPT Waste provides a fully managed waste management solution designed for the leisure, industrial and commercial sectors.

GPT provides customers with a sustainable waste management plan and better still, reduced waste collection and processing costs. The service provided ensures customers have a single point of contact for all waste requirements and a single source of invoicing.