F&B players from around Singapore have formed an alliance that aims to decrease the industry’s carbon footprint. The F&B Sustainability Council met for the first time last week to discuss greener solutions for a more sustainable dining experience including lessening food waste and bidding farewell to single-use glass. This is what else we learned…
Singapore’s commitment to sustainability has been unwavering, and the recent formation of an F&B Sustainability Council is further testament to that. Spearheaded by Mexican restaurant and bar operator The Loco Group, the F&B Sustainability Council was formed as a platform geared at creating a common call-to-arms that will tackle some of Singapore’s most pressing environmental issues within the F&B industry.
The council united together allies from around Singapore’s F&B industry from chefs to CEOs, sommeliers to suppliers, restaurateurs to hoteliers. This includes 20 representatives from 12 of Singapore’s food and beverage companies, including heavyweights like The Lo & Behold Group, Spa Esprit Group and Grand Hyatt Singapore. Emerging restaurant and bar operators The Cicheti Group, Grain Traders, 13% Gastro Wine and The Providore have also joined as part of the fold, alongside premium beverage distributors Proof & Company, Trouble Brewing and The Better Food Distribution Co, as well as Selva Foods (a distributor specialising in bringing wild-harvested açaí products). Green Is The New Black is a founding member of the council and also works closely with The Loco Group in developing their own #LittleGreenSteps.
The council held its first assemblage on January 21 at Grand Hyatt Singapore, and its first set of deliverables was laid out for members. They walked away from the first meeting with a set short-term goals that they will be held accountable to at the next roundtable. These are the first steps…
1. Members will undertake a full-on carbon assessment
Although general manager, William Leonard, leads the journey towards carbon neutrality, the first step is up to each member. The journey begins with each member committing to a carbon assessment of their direct operations emissions so they can better understand their carbon footprint as a starting point.
2. Reducing food waste is paramount
Several members stepped forward and said that food waste was one of the most significant issues they were trying to solve. From small to medium-sized businesses, they said that their restaurants and establishments don’t generate enough collective food waste to meet the existing government grants that aid the purchase of a food waste treatment system. To remedy this, the Lo & Behold Group’s COO Andrew Ing raised the idea of pooling together for a central food waste treatment system that would then meet the minimum eligibility for a government grant. The motion was passed.
3. Plans were laid out to reduce glass wastage
In a bid to better the drinks industry in Singapore, waste management systems were revealed including a water efficiency plan which utilises only 30 per cent of water in brewing its beer compared to most breweries. In the same breath, arrangements were made to send grain and malt waste to Malaysia for recycling and trial a bottle return and rebate model to reduce glass wastage.
4. Reforestation is the way forward
Green Steps Group, a tech start-up engaged in helping organisations mitigate climate change, spoke at the assemblage and shared research that showed planting trees is one of the most significant, cheapest and most efficient ways of taking carbon out of the atmosphere. Several of the members have pledged to partner with Green Steps Group to mitigate their carbon footprint through reforestation.
5. Get everyone involved
Although the council is limited to 15 core members, in order for the wider industry to adopt their learnings, a closed Facebook group has been created for anyone interested where they can continue the discussion, share learnings, discuss ideas and amplify the outcomes of the council. “We created the council to effect change in the way we operate, but also inspire the industry as a whole. We hope that between our individual and collective journeys, and the community we hope to build through the Facebook group — that they will be a source of both inspiration and information for anyone who feels like they’re going at it alone.” Apply to be a part of the group by emailing [email protected]
The next roundtable will be held on May 29.