Part 1: Do your food waste review

Last updated: 9 February 2021

Do your food waste review

Monitoring your food waste will help you to identify where food is being wasted and how much this may be costing your business.

"" Part of the sheet, Food Waste Review tracker

1. Print the Progress checklist

The Progress checklist will help you keep track on the next steps to take.

2. Decide when you will do your review and for how long

The longer you spend on it, the more accurate the data will be.

Do your review on days when customer numbers are not too low or not too high. This will give you a good average.

3. Print the relevant Food Waste Review tracker

4. Set up the materials: buckets with labels, weighing scale and tracker sheets

Make it easy for the staff to put food in the right buckets. For example:

  • Make the buckets easy to see.
  • Put the buckets in a central location or places where they will be most useful.
  • Put the buckets so that your staff can get to them easily.

5. Explain to your team how to sort the food waste

Make sure that staff who will be using the buckets to sort food waste know what needs to be done.

This will usually include staff who may come across:

  • spoilage waste – for instance, those who work in stock management
  • preparation waste – for instance, kitchen staff
  • surplus waste – for instance, front of house staff
  • plate waste – for instance, anyone involved in scraping plates.

Explain the difference between the four types of waste.

Show them where the buckets are.

Let them know that the food waste must be sorted correctly during the review and that buckets will be weighed at the end of the day.

6. At the end of each day, weigh each bucket

Record the results on your Food waste review tracker. List the food that is usually wasted, for example: bread, salad, offcuts or pastries.

Dispose of the food waste as you usually would.

7. At the end of the review period, add up the totals

Using the tracker, tally the totals for each bucket. You should now be able to see where food waste is occurring most.


Ask a staff member to be your ‘Zero Waste Champion’. They can be the one to make sure food is sorted properly, weighed and recorded every day.