Reducing waste is one of the most important ways for restaurant franchises to cut down on costs and improve efficiency. Sustainability isn’t just the right thing to do for the environment, but it has a massive impact on your bottom-line.
Did you know that approximately 1.3 billion tonnes of food specifically produced for human consumption is wasted every single year? It’s additionally estimated that around 40% of this total comes from restaurants and food franchises. That’s a lot.
So let’s jump straight in and look at four of the most important ways to reduce waste in your ghost kitchen operations...
1. Leveraging the power of technology
Ghost kitchen brands are uniquely placed to leverage the power of technology and data. With most orders coming from online food delivery platforms, there is a wealth of data to track and analyse. This can help owners predict demand (and therefore plan supply), understand which dishes are most popular at various times of the week and monitor inventory levels.
We’ve already written about the best tech to merge your online delivery orders onto one system, so do take a look at this if you’re thinking of improving your restaurant franchise’s technology.
2. Offering grocery delivery
“Quick commerce” and on-demand grocery delivery services are revolutionising the food delivery market. It’s an emerging trend that can make an enormous difference to your ghost kitchen brand’s profits.
But have you also considered that grocery delivery is a fantastic way of cutting down on food waste? If you’re able to streamline your menu so that grocery delivery items are also used in key dishes – you can sell any excess stock (operating a First In, First Out stock management), reduce waste and make a profit at the same time.
3. Carefully audit your packaging
Restaurant waste isn’t just about food. Sufficient packaging is an essential part of online food delivery – ensuring that food arrives hot and in good condition – but it also creates copious amounts of waste. With greater government focus on sustainability in business, ghost kitchen brands are likely to be increasingly held accountable for their environmental impact.
With this in mind, research compostable or 100% recyclable options, with paper and cardboard (as opposed to plastics) used wherever possible. Customers also demand sustainable options, so by carefully auditing your packaging you’ll meet consumer demand and reduce waste.
4. Engage your entire team
Reducing a virtual food brand’s waste can’t be done alone! It’s vital to engage every single employee in your mission to reduce waste – both in terms of food, packaging and even staff time. You could ask staff to help you create a “waste inventory”, helping you identify any areas of inefficiency across the business.
This will ensure any changes are better targeted (for instance ingredient substitutions, staff rota changes or portion sizes) with your staff fully onboard. Your ghost kitchen chefs are at the front-line of the business, and they’ll have great ideas for reducing waste.
Investing in training on reducing waste (for instance during food preparation, storage and cleaning protocols) will also improve morale and make staff feel their learning and progression is genuinely valued.
Peckwater Brands help both kitchen operators and brand owners improve their efficiency and tap into the growing food delivery market. Book a call today and find out how we can help you create a great delivery franchise. You run the kitchen, we do the rest.