MGT723 Research Project 4 Essay


Title Of The Project: Food Waste Management In Restaurants In Australia

State the purpose of this progress report.

Summarise all areas of this progress report – background, management problem, research question and objectives, literature review, methods and data analysis plans.




This proposal explores the various ways of food waste management in the Australian Restaurants that have been a significant problem. About a third of the foods being produced in the Australian restaurant go into wastage percentage. The recommendations of the food waste management will save the county’s food basket and the financial loss in acquiring food from other countries.


Food forms an essential component of human life as it provides both the nutrients, energy and the ability to grow. Therefore, food loss is a hindrance to the existence of the human being, and it occurs in all the system of the production. Food waste in restaurants has been a problem for a large number of food production units starting from the agricultural point to the point of customer service in the restaurants. According to the Agricultural Organization of the United Nations , about a third of the food produced globally for the human consumption every year, 1.3 tones get to waste as approximately 795 million of people of 7.5 billion goes without food; this translates to about one out of nine people sufferers chronic malnutrition globally(Sanchez-Vazquez,Hailes & Evans 2013,p.628). According to the FAO, food waste per capita consumers in North America and Europe stands at 95 and 115 kg per year, while that of the South East and Saharan Africa stands at 6 to 11 kg per capita per year. According to the U.S Department of Agriculture, about 30% of the total global food wastes, come from the restaurant's operations while 40% results from the farm operations such as harvesting. It is noted that the food waste in restaurants as a big problem since it leads to a large number of people to go hungry yet it can be minimized if not entirely avoided.

According to the FAO global food forecast, the production of the food must increase by 60% to sustain the rapid growth of population by the end of 2050(Gonzaelez 2015,p.21). Without proper address of the problem, then the percentage of those suffering from the chronic malnutrition is projected to increase, leading to poor health, low workforce hence weaker nation. Eventually, the whole world will be erased by hunger only. The initiative requires proper food management to reduce the wastage of the available food stock, and therefore, numerous government agencies and bodies have come together to have better options of realizing the agenda. The paper, therefore, examines food wastage in a restaurant with an emphasis in Australia. The primary aim of the article is to investigate how to reduce food wastage in Australia restaurants, and these can be realized through the identification of the food wastes channels.

Research question and objectives

The research questions of this proposal aimed at addressing the food waste in the Australian restaurant and the management ways.

RQ1: What are the causes of food waste in the Australian Restaurants?

RQ2: How can the food waste be reduced or managed?

Research Boundaries

The research will be specific to the of food wastage in various restaurants in Australia with an emphasis on the food wastage sources and ways of wastage reduction.

Report outline

After the introduction of the topic, the second section will major on reviewing the existing literature on food wastage on the world and Australian with subtopic on the sources of food wastage, percentage and possible food wastage management. The third section is the mythologies that will include an emphasis on the process of the research such as data collection, sample size determination, and analysis of the results. The fourth section will entail the actual data analysis of the research, and the fifth section will contain the final report of the paper.

Literature review

This chapter entails a detailed analysis of past authorized reports and scientific works on the food waste and food waste management. The review of the journals enables to make a coherent and a well-grounded discussion on this topic globally with specific reference to Australia. The journals are critically examined to identify the gaps that have made the problem to still exist even after the extensive discussion in the global meetings.

Definition of the key concepts

Food waste is defined by the FAO as that food that is produced majorly for the human consumption but was never or will never be consumed by humans instead end up into non-food use such as being fed to the animals or disposed as result of being unfit for human consumption: for example being disposed at a landfill, have fungal growths or feedstock to the anaerobic digestion plants (Finn 2014, p.385).

Food waste classification

Food wastes are classified into two major types: avoidable and the unavoidable food waste. The avoidable food wastes refer to the food products that could have been used for human consumption but end up not eaten due to various reasons (Warshaesky 2016, p.384). These foods can either be cooked such as cooked pasta and vegetable that tend to lose quality after some time. These foods get rotten making them, hence loose taste or unfit for the consumption hence being disposed of. On the other hand, the unavoidable food waste refers to the food products that occur during the food preparation such as cutting, peeling, and removal of bones among many others. The preparation process always results in discarding of big chunks of the edible parts of the food.

Global food wastage overview

The recent research carried out by the United States, and the United Kingdom indicates that food waste is a global problem since almost a quarter of the food produced globally ends up in waste leading to the economic problem. For example US loses food that worth 96 billion of dollar every year, while the UK report indicates that about 18-22% of food purchased ends up into wastes, translating into 7.5-8.4 million tons per year (Abdullah,Gudo & Singarvelu 2014,p.179).the tendency of food waste keeps on worsening, and it spreads rapidly into the food preparation institutions such as homes, hotels, and restaurants. The report indicates that above $ 100 billion of food is wasted in the food industry. The most significant percentage of waste occurs in the residential and households with 47% followed by restaurants 37% and institutional sectors such as schools, hospitals at 11 %(Munesue, Masui & Fushima 2014,p.48). From the data, it is evidential that a lot of money is spent on the food that is never consumed hence leading to high food prices and inaccessible to a large population in the world resulting into diseases and deaths. The implications are so much on the developing countries such as Africa and the Middle East hence demanding the need for food waste management.

This shows that restaurants need proper management of food to reduce the wastage to ensure food security in the world. The administration follows a general model known as the ASRW Conceptual Model and covers different areas such as consumed food, surplus food, and food scrap (Grainger et al.2018,p.5). The wasted food entails the edible foods that are consumed by a human. The surplus food involves edible food that is not sold or served to the customers while the food scrap entails the non-edible food that is not suitable for the human consumption, that is either broken during the production or storage.

Overview of food waste in Australian Restaurants

According to Andrea and Rose (2015, p.3), Australian is one of the food producers in the world since it tends to produce more food than it can consume however more than two million people in Australia still depend on the relief food. The large junks of land left unoccupied facilitate the production of food, leading to the exportation of about 65% to overseas. However, according to FoodWise campaign, about $ 8 billion worth of edible food produced in Australia ends up into wastage every year with loaves of bread topping the list followed by milk, potatoes, cheese apples among many others(Singh-Peterson et al. 2016,p.91). Averagely, Australian household loses about $ 1,000 per year in food waste and many Aussies wastes about 20% of the food they purchase from the food endpoints (Neff, Spiker & Truant 2015). The commercial and the industrial generate approximately 1.9 million food waste every year, whereby the food service industry such as restaurants accounts for half of the figure.

Australian restaurants tend to stop spend averagely about 24% of the weekly turnover on food purchase and at least about 40% of the purchased food end up in the dustbin. Therefore, the Australians restaurant plays a significant role in food waste management since they represent about a quarter of the food consumption (Pagotto & Halog 2016, p.1179).

Food waste sources

Food waste occurs in almost of every point of the food supply chain between the farmers and the consumers during the transportation, storage, processing, and service. Therefore, the wastage can be and reduced to save money.

According to Tucker and Farrelly (2016, p.690).Food wastes in restaurants occur in different stages of production in a restaurant such as from the point of storage, preparation, service to the customer, plate waste, and leftovers.

Wastes as a result of the storage results when an incorrect storage method is used in preserving food products, for example, storing food that is intended to be served and eaten on the preparation day such as salad or the buffet food.

  1. Preparation wastes occur during the food preparation process such as lots of nutrient during cooking, peeling of fruits leading to the disposal of edible parts and foods that drop on the ground.
  2. Service food wastes occur during the service to customers such as food that remain in the serving bowls. Some of the wastage also results from the falls on the customer's tables during the eating time.
  3. Plates food wastes tend to occur when a consumer leaves some foods on the plate uneaten. The plate size also determines the extent of waste as larger plates tend to make food look less while small plates with the same portion make it look so much.
  4. Leftovers are food wastes that occur when the food that was prepared is never served to be eaten.

Food Waste Management

As indicated earlier, a significant amount of food in the restaurant ends up in the bin which can be reduced or avoided (Grmelova & Vavrecka 2018, p.50). The most of the standard practices used are recycling, food donation, and change of processing and preparation methods.

Recycling A significant amount of food waste in the restaurants can be effectively managed through the reuse or recycling method. Recycling methods such using the unconsumed chunk of foods, and those that are peeled from the fruits can be used to feed animals such as pigs helps in saving food that could have been thrown (Kostecka ,Garcynriska & Paczka 2018,p.158).

Food donation

Some restaurants end up with a significant amount of food that cannot be consumed by customers. Such food while still fit for human consumption can be donated to the social welfare as a method of food wastage measurement (Cloke,Mary &Williams 2017,p.705).

Change of food preparation/processing

As indicated earlier, potatoes are among the top of the food wasted in Australia. This is as a result of the peeling process that results in the disposal of a large chunk of the edible part. Through the use of effective processing methods such as potatoes peeler machine, then the wastage will be reduced.

Food Banks

Food banks also act as the major food waste management in most parts of the world. The banks tend to collect excess food that would have gone into wastes and redistribute among the needy people through the organized charity organizations. In Australia, food banks have been instrumental in combating food insecurity by providing over 60 million meals every year and above 1000 schools in the country. The body collects food from the well-wishers and the individuals that have excess food such as harvests, through this; the country manages the food wastes.

Challenges of food waste management in Australian restaurants

Australian restaurant tends to face different challenges in managing the food waste. Factors such as different service points, limited recycling facilities, poor transportation costs type and distance from the recycling facilities (Vinegar, Parker & McCourt 2016, p.246). Other researchers also showed that a number of people tend to have little knowledge on the food waste management ideas.


Several types of research indicate that food wastage is paramount in Australia and the world at large. Most of the wastages occur during the transportation, storage, processing, and service to customers. The sources are also manageable since essential initiatives are in place to check on that. However, the research does not indicate how the human attitude and behavior can affect or be used in food waste management. The research paper will, therefore, investigate the views of the Australian restaurant's staffs to determine how they change the food waste management.


This section aims at revealing the research process details. Various aspects such as the choice of the literature review, the selection of the research methods, tools, the identification of the population and sample design determination, the data collection methods, reliability as well as the validity, the data analysis method with the justification of the choices.

Research method

The study will employ a qualitative research method. The qualitative research method is chosen because there is a need to understand the research questions that need to establish the sources of food wastes and ways of reducing the food wastes (Rutberg & Bouikidis 2018, p.211). The method has been applied by various past researchers on the food service industries to determine food waste management in multiple countries such as in Denmark. These can be achieved through exploration of the recent data, face to face communication and the observation of the respondents resulting in more in-depth understanding. A questionnaire will be developed to cover the required information with credibility and unbiased.

Sources of data: Secondary data

The secondary data will be retrieved from various sources such as government reports, food agencies reports such as Australian Bureau of Statistic and Food Authority Organizations that will provide past, current and future standings of the food stock and waste of the country. Additionally, peer-reviewed journals as used in the literature review will also be used for the development of the research framework.

Primary data

A review of the restaurant's food purchase records against the sales will be conducted to determine the amount of wastage. A questionnaire will also help in identifying the sources of food wastage and how it can be managed.

Data collection

The data collection process entails the accurate reporting of the information collected from the participants.

Sample and Participants

The information required will be collected from a sample of restaurants in Australia. According to Faghaly (2018, p.4) population tends to be a broader group and therefore, having a small number, a subset makes the researcher easy and appropriate (Mauro, Haxtema & Temesgen 2017, p.711). The restaurant selection will be based on the basis of food handling knowledge and experience, availability and willingness to participate. The researcher will approach basically the managers, assistant managers, kitchen staffs and cooks of the selected restaurants since they are rich in the required information. The selected restaurants will represent the entire image of Australia’s restaurant population, and therefore, the researcher will employ random sampling method in choosing the restaurant samples to eliminate biases.

Ethical consideration

While carrying out the research, the researcher will take care of the past works of people that will be only accessed after a granted permission. The researcher will also ensure that there is no plagiarism of the study, and the representation of the correct data collected from the respondents, without changing to suit the desires of the researcher. No restaurants will participate without their consents; no restaurant will be forced to give details about their food wastage. Additionally, the researcher will ensure that the acquired data is protected.

Proposed Data Analysis

The data for the research will be obtained from the exploratory interview and the field notes collected by the researcher from the beginning until the end of the study. There are several data analysis methods used by researchers such as descriptive, inferential, and thematic among many others (Povee & Roberts 2014, p.29). The researcher will employ a Thematic Analysis data analysis method (TA) since it will be able to accommodate the qualitative aspects of the study as it is more flexible in most of the social studies.

The thematic data analysis will be under different stages: the familiarization with the collected data and listing down all the similar ideas/sources of food wastages in the restaurants. The second stage will entail interpretation of the unstructured responses from the interview/questionnaire on the ways of food wastage reduction, recycling and the challenges faced. The third step will be a listing of all the categorized responses to have a simple insight to determine the percentage in response to the topics under research. Finally, the researcher will review all the transcriptions to ensure that all the major intentions of the study are achieved from the data analysis. This will be essential since it will prove the validity of the results. The analyzed data will be presented in charts, graphs and tables to facilitate easy understanding of the discussed themes.


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