Separation of waste in gastronomy

March 19, 2020 6 min read


Rubbish is generated in abundance in gastronomy - starting with the Bowl for eating to-go, to-go cups and cover , foil food is wrapped in Plastic cutlery , up to Disposable bag for a snack on the go. In the preparation of every dish arises rubbish , there is usually one with the drink drinking straw and if the food is not eaten and you want to take it away, she comes Styrofoam shell for use. There are small ones at the breakfast buffet packaged jams and at the coffee table Disposable coffee cream . Despite all this, guests don't want to miss out on a leisurely visit to a restaurant, but their requirements and the need for more sustainable variants is increasing! More and more people want to know which garbage is created when and how, and above all what happens to it . How can you do it justice as a restaurateur

Sustainability is becoming more important to many people!

Correct waste separation saves money and protects the environment

The less garbage the better . Of course, this cannot be implemented overnight, so it would initially be an important step, the previous one To look at and optimize waste disposal processes . A big problem in many companies is the separation of waste. Often things have to be done quickly, the leftover food ends up in the yellow sack and the empty cream packaging in the organic waste bin. Or there is simply no space for many different bins in small kitchens or behind narrow counters. The correct recycling of the waste can then unfortunately no longer take place, with all kinds of waste arising in every catering establishment! Gastronomy companies could make a major contribution to the environment by offering their Inform staff and everyone involved about waste separation and set realistic goals for the team .

Frequent rubbish in the gastro ... These tons should be ready ...

Glass bottles, i.e. containers

Waste glass container

Plastic such as plastic packaging, aluminum, tinplate cans& Composite material a material consisting of two or more materials such as tetra packss)

Recyclable bin

Organic waste & leftover food

Compost bin

Cardboard & paper

Waste paper bins

Other residual waste such as ceramics, ashes, vacuum cleaner bags, etc.

Residual waste bin


It is important to note that Old glass carefully sorted by color - brown, green and white , and should be cleaned if necessary. This includes neither ceramic nor glass from broken drinking glasses. Cardboard can be shredded - that saves a lot of space! Disposing of used oils and fats and not pouring them down the drain also has a financial advantage - many disposal companies pay money . In general, larger residual waste bins cost more money for companies because Recyclable bins have been an obligation for restaurateurs since 2015 - if waste is carefully separated, this can reduce the costs of residual waste, the so-called waste fees. There should also be a possibility Dispose of textiles, wood and metal separately .

Why is waste separation so important?

Without waste separation, it cannot be recycled because every material has to be processed differently. Recycling means that material is processed and reused, which saves resources.


Recycling plays an enormous role for our earth, but unfortunately only a fraction of the waste generated is recycled. By recycling materials, you can Resources and energies are saved , of the The greenhouse effect is reduced and thus the Counteracting global warming become. The list of positive effects of correct waste separation and, ultimately, increased recycling is long! In 2019, there were 222,740 hotels and restaurants in Germany. These can therefore has a huge impact on the ecological footprint of the country and thus one great contribution to improving environmental pollution Afford!



„There is no doubt about the findings of the scientific community: the threat of global warming is very real and action must be taken immediately. It is a grave mistake to believe that we can hesitate any longer. Scientists don't think so, and neither should others.

— Henry Kendall, Nobel Laureate in Physics

Advantages for restaurateurs

What advantages do I have as a restaurateur if I do without rubbish and pay more attention to proper disposal

First of all, it improves that image : Sustainability is not just a trend, it has become an important task for many and inevitable! The guests will have a good impression and will go to a restaurant with a clear conscience and therefore more often if they know that environmental protection plays a role here.

One can save money when you try to reduce or sort your garbage properly! As the following calculation example shows:

"The following calculation example shows the savings. In one
Hotel incurs around 3.5 liters of residual waste per night.
In addition, if not carefully separated, land
Liters of recyclable materials and other waste in the residual waste bin.
This results in a waste volume of
900 liters. The hotel needs a residual waste bin with 1,100
Liters volume, because the next smaller ton is 770 litersr)
not enough. With weekly emptying such a cost
Residual waste bins around 1,700 euros per year, depending on the region. At
a bin with 770 liters would be sufficient for optimal waste separation and that is around 500 euros cheaper per year. ""

DEHOGA federal association

How can packaging waste be saved?

... to generally have less that has to be separated.

  • Buy large containers instead of several small packages
  • Replacing packaged products e.g. at the breakfast buffet or at the coffee table with bowls / dispensers can also result in less food residue, as guests can portion themselves)
  • Replace plastic straws with glass straws
  • Use reusable boxes and bags for shopping and / or return packaging to suppliers who can or must dispose of it
  • Use coasters made of wood or glass
  • Use reusable cloth napkins instead of paper

But packaging isn't the only problem

... the amount of food waste produced by a catering business is also huge.

D.The composition of the waste should be looked at and analyzed to see what is most present . For example, if the waste contains mostly cooked food that is not consumed by customers, the Revised menu and the proportion of dishes can be reduced or two different sizes of dishes are offered, small or large.).

If the portions are still not made, guests should be able to take them away. Unfortunately, most to-go containers cannot be reused and therefore not in the interests of sustainability. You can therefore point out to customers, for example, bring your own container , on Set up a deposit system for to-go boxes such asreBowl or at least choose more sustainable material for the boxes like Sugar cane .

Zu Much cooked dishes don't have to be thrown away at the end of the day! Around reduce food waste there are now some companies on the market that help to avoid waste, e.g.toogoodtogo.Before the end of the day, unsold groceries can also be sold at a lower price. The advantage is threefold:

  • Customers are happy to buy these at low prices
  • You earn hard cash because instead of throwing this food away, it is resold
  • And above all, it's a big step for the environment!

For the enjoyment of customers and the avoidance of waste should be the Quality takes precedence over quantity in every company !


Many people place increasing value on sustainability and environmental protection and expect the same from companies. On the other hand, companies and companies can also be good role models and use the major role they play in society for something good! The topics of waste separation and recycling should always be discussed with the team so that something can be achieved together.

Waste separation is a good step in the right direction, BUT: the less waste, the cheaper & less stressful! The reusable alternatives also look better, do not have to be constantly bought and are therefore cheaper in the long term.

The environment and your customers will thank you!