Thursday, 6 October 2011

Too Good to Waste

Top London chefs are backing a campaign to encourage diners to take home leftover food. The Too Good To Waste campaign, organised by the Sustainable Restaurant Association, aims to cut the 200,000 tons of food estimated to be wasted each year. Although American diners are more than happy to ask for a bag to take home uneaten food, it seems the British are just too reticent. In a recent survey, although 90% thought restaurants needed to do more to cut down on waste, a third had never thought to ask for a doggy bag and another quarter were too embarrassed.

Now, restaurants that support the campaign will stock “doggy boxes” and train staff to offer them to diners who don’t finish their meals. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, who is leading the campaign, says “Food waste in restaurants is a massive problem and doggy bags are an excellent way of cutting waste. There’s no need to be shy.”

Having tried, and failed, recently to get a suitable container to take home untouched cakes from a recent afternoon tea at a top hotel, I’m delighted by this move. Just like the serving of tapwater, I’d like to see this become standard practice at all restaurants.

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