What is swill and how does it reduce food waste?

Just like households, companies have to deal with waste. Regardless of the industry, waste is always there. While offices mainly deal with paper and residual waste, swill waste is the main waste stream in catering companies and company canteens. But, what exactly is swill? And what are your obligations as a catering entrepreneur with regard to separating this waste? In this article you can also read about the advantages of separating swill and how it can contribute to the fight against food waste.

Swill afval

What is swill?

Every company that produces food generates waste streams consisting of leftovers from cooked and uncooked food. This waste can be divided into GFT and swill. GFT is probably familiar to you, which stands for vegetable, fruit and garden waste. Swill is actually part of the GFT waste and consists specifically of cooked food waste. The organic waste from kitchens, canteens or restaurants is therefore part of the swill waste. We are talking about leftovers from soup, sauces, cooked foods or bread. If left for too long, it will give off bad odors and mold, which will get worse when mixed with other waste.

Is it mandatory to separate swill waste?

Companies that produce more than 200 kilograms of swill waste per week are also required to separate this. It is then possible for companies to request a special container and thus effortlessly separate swill waste. In addition to the fact that separating swill is mandatory, it also offers advantages. This way you prevent unpleasant odors and mold and other waste remains "cleaner" and more recyclable. In addition, separating swill waste makes you as a company aware of the amount of food that goes into the trash every day. Most of the waste that belongs to swill is in principle food waste because many food residues are often still usable. There is therefore still much ground to be gained in this area.

How does swill contribute to reducing food waste?

Food waste happens all the time. From the farmer to our plate. Food is wasted for various reasons. It goes bad shortly after leaving the farm, it doesn't meet size or shape standards, it expires while it's in the supermarket or we throw it away from our fridge or from our plate. In Europe, more than half of food waste is due to consumer behavior, while the rest is lost before it reaches our homes.

To reuse swill waste in a sustainable way, it must be properly separated from other waste streams. For example, when you collect it completely separately, coffee grounds can be converted into notebooks or soap. The rest of the organic waste can become biogas, compost or diesel. The better we separate waste, the more opportunities there are to produce and preserve these raw materials.

Packaging against food waste

Food waste plays an important role in the climate crisis and is a challenging problem to solve. However, packaging can contribute to the fight against food waste. Do you have a catering business? Always give your guests the option to take leftovers with them in a doggy bag, instead of throwing away all that delicious food. Use environmentally friendly disposables for this and you're already on the right track! TakeAware helps you make the step towards more sustainable disposable packaging. In our digital shelves you will find a wide range of friendly disposables that contribute to a circular economy, where waste gets a second life! We offer various disposables, mostly made from plant-based materials. Think of wood, palm leaf, sugar cane and bamboo. Curious about our product range? Take a look at our meal containers and menu boxes, paper bags and paper sacks.