Otago Polytechnic
Dunedin Casino Rexness 22 Dec 2009 cc by sa2.0

Reducing food waste

One of our students has been working on kitchen strategies with Dunedin Casino.

Dunedin Casino operates a 40-seat restaurant which offers full service from 11:00am to 12:00 am and a snack menu until 2:30am. There is also a bar and cafe on site, and a buffet for casino staff. Dunedin Casino sought to reduce their food waste - organic waste that is discarded at any stage of the process of food production. This includes products that are not used before their shelf-life expires, waste from the process of food preparation, and prepare food that is not eaten.

Applied Management student Aakash Shiva conducted five structured interviews with staff, and carried out a thorough food waste audit across a whole day. Nearly half of the food waste was from uneaten food,  from the staff buffet and from customers not finishing their large servings of food. 

To reduce uneaten food, Aakash recommended that Dunedin Casino offer takeaway bags to à la carte restaurant customers if food remains on their plates. Portion control was also identified as a key measure that could be introduced to reduce food waste, educating staff using the buffet and scaling down portion sizes of served meals. Another recommendation was to introduce a recycling policy. 

Image credit: Rexness, used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licence 2.0.

July 2019