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Harvard conference: food waste measurement in focus

By Steven Finn, Vice President of Food Waste Prevention.  ///  July 31, 2018


US Food Waste Summit, panel on Measurement of Food Waste. Panelists from left to right: Andrew Shakman, LeanPath, Inc.  |  Nell Fry, Sodexo  |  Kai Robertson, World Resources Institute  |  Alison Grantham, Blue Apron  |  Lisa Johnson, North Carolina State University  |  Jackie Suggitt, ReFED 

LeanPath recently returned from the US Food Waste Summit in Cambridge, MA, a powerful event led by the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic and ReFED which brought together leaders from all over the globe to focus on solutions to the food waste challenge.

What was so powerful about the event was that food waste prevention took center stage. It is very easy to lose focus on prevention--actually stopping food waste from happening to begin with rather than dealing with it after it's created. It's easy to focus instead on composting, for instance, even though prevention has the bigger positive impact on the environment and is the only point on the Food Recovery Hierarchy that can also impact a kitchen's bottom line. 

Alongside the focus on prevention was the understanding that measurement is key to prevention. That's what LeanPath does. We empower kitchens to track and measure their food waste so they can understand why it's happening and make smart changes to stop creating it.

But an underlying notion among some attendees at the conference was that measuring food waste is difficult. It is not. In fact, we've spent over a decade making sure it's easy.

Automation is the key.

A kitchen weighs its food waste, spends literally seconds identifying what it is and where it came from. The rest is automated. LeanPath crunches the data, provides insights in easy to understand charts, automatically sets goals based on areas of highest impact, and automatically sends out notifications, reports and alerts so management and staff are aware of what's being wasted and important trends so they can make smart changes to prevent food waste from being created. 

The world is embracing prevention. The next step is embracing measurement. The good news: we've made measurement easy.

Topics: Food Waste Musings, Latest News, Food Waste Prevention Newsletter, Food Waste News, food waste measurement, measurement