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13th December 2022

Hospitality businesses could save £1,000s by recycling food waste

With 50 pubs closing each month in England and Wales, economic mayhem has hit the hospitality industry and businesses across the UK are under pressure to save money wherever they can.

Meanwhile, on average, hospitality businesses are spending £50,862 every year on sending their food waste to landfill, but recycling food waste could save them over £7,000 per year, according to new research from Keenan Recycling.

This comes as the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) Environmental Act is fast approaching, which plans to make it a legal requirement in England for companies to recycle food waste. The study, conducted by the national food waste recycling company, also revealed that 69%* of hospitality businesses in the UK either don’t know about the legislation or if they do, have little or no understanding of it.

On top of this, almost half (48%) of UK hospitality businesses do not think food waste is a core priority, and shockingly, a quarter (26%) said that they do not recycle food waste at all.

However, although hospitality businesses said that they felt unprepared or needed more education on the upcoming legislation, half of respondents (49%) did say that their business is working to gain an understanding of it, and 54% said that they already employ a specific contractor to recycle their food waste.

Grant Keenan, managing director at Keenan Recycling, said: “With surging energy costs, staff shortages and falling bookings due to the cost of living crisis, there is no doubt that it is a tough time in the hospitality industry at the moment. It has been widely reported that insolvencies of restaurant businesses are now happening at a far faster rate than during the Covid crisis, and we know that businesses are being put under severe resource constraints. So, a saving of £7,000 could have a big impact on businesses who are struggling, even during the usually lucrative festive period.

“On top of this, with pending legislative change and pressure for businesses to make their own net zero plans public, food recycling will be key to how operations function sustainably in the future, so the best time to become involved with it is now.”

For hospitality businesses in Scotland, where Keenan’s headquarters reside, food waste recycling has been mandatory for those producing over 50kg of waste since 2014. This was then extended to any business producing over 5kg of waste in 2016, making it a legal obligation for any such business to recycle using a registered waste carrier service.

Grant ended: “This is what the English legislation that’s proposed to be introduced in 2023 is likely to enforce, meaning that most businesses should be looking to become more educated about food waste recycling and its many benefits, not only financially, but also when it comes to resource productivity and creating a more circular economy.”

For more insights download Keenan Recycling’s full ‘Food Waste Recycling 101’ report here.


About Keenan Recycling:

Keenan Recycling collects food waste from the public and private sector organisations across the UK, and transforms it into compost, renewable electricity and gas, heat and fuel. Its ever-growing fleet of specialised food waste collection vehicles operate a 24/7, 365-day a year service, across 17 depots, offering private & public sectors clients an opportunity to segregate food waste for separate collection .

For more information, visit

Press release from Refresh.

For more information, please contact the Keenan Recycling team at Refresh PR via