Nancy Goergen has been at Sanford USD Medical Center for over 35 years—watching the organization grow from two buildings to two full city blocks. As the Training and Development Specialist for Food and Nutrition Services, she was integral to the implementation and roll out of the LeanPath system, which Sanford launched in May of 2011. Sanford currently utilizes two LeanPath Trackers at their operation—one in the main kitchen and another in the retail location.
Creating a Waste Fighting Culture
Getting employees on board wasn’t difficult at Sanford. “Most of our employees were ready and eager to see how much we were wasting and then work to reduce it.” However, they spotted some immediate changes they could make in staff behavior to reduce waste. “In retail, we had to adjust the thinking—not all the pans have to be full. It’s OK to run out of the high cost items as long as you have other options. It was very enlightening for everyone to actually see how much the food cost.”
From Data to Changes
Sanford USD pulls data and reports from the LeanPath System on a weekly basis and sends it to all of the food and nutrition services managers. Managers look at the data and dig deeper into what’s causing the waste in their areas. “We’re doing things differently to the menu to reduce waste in light of seeing the data and what was being wasted.” They have also made seasonal adjustments. “Seasonally, we’ve learned when to reduce quantities. We’ve also adjusted how much we order around holidays so we don’t have as much waste. Every item on the LeanPath report is an opportunity for discussion.”
Over a 7-month period, Sanford USD saved nearly $100,000 in waste avoidance, reducing pre-consumer food waste by 43%.
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