Sodexo at UCL saves 1,000 meals with Too Good To Go app

The Sodexo team at UCL is leading the fight against food waste by teaming up with the Too Good To Go app.

The team, which runs Food Federation at UCL, signed up to the app in October 2018 and have already saved over 1,000 unsold meals from being incinerated for fuel.

Neil Whittle, Sodexo’s Contract Director at UCL, said; “We are committed to reducing food waste and are always looking for innovative ways we can make our meals go further.

“When we heard about the Too Good To Go app, we were really keen to give it a go. We always have a variety of meals on offer in the refectory at UCL, which means there is inevitably some left over once the lunchtime service comes to an end.

The Too Good to Go app allows customers to purchase unsold meals, that would otherwise go to waste, at a discounted price.

Following the lunchtime service, up to 10 meals are made available to purchase through the app. Customers buy the meal through the app then collect it from the UCL refectory between 2.30pm and 3pm, before the team starts preparing for the evening service.

Neil adds; “The unsold meals we make available include vegetarian and non-vegetarian options, which can come from any of our counters in the refectory, so the food we sell via the app is always varied. One day it might be a lasagne and salad, the next it might be a tofu stir fry. And if we have fruit pots or yoghurts that are at their use by date, we will include those free of charge.

“We have had really positive reviews so far and are delighted to have reached the 1,000 meals milestone. None of us want to see perfectly good food go to waste, so we are pleased to be able to sell more meals via Too Good To Go. It also sends a positive message to our clients that we take our commitments to reduce food waste seriously.”

The Too Good To Go app is now being trialled at a number of other Sodexo sites, including Coventry University, Birkbeck, the Sutton Bonington campus at the University of Nottingham, and City, University of London. Collectively, over 1,500 meals have been saved.

Ana Svab, Corporate Responsibility Manager at Sodexo, said: “As part of our Better Tomorrow 2025 commitment, Sodexo has signed up to the UN goal to reduce food waste, and we also have our own target of halving food waste by 2030. The Too Good To Go app is an easy way to reduce the amount of food that is fit for consumption being disposed of unnecessarily.

“It is really exciting to see that the Sodexo team at UCL is already having such success with the app, and we will be considering how we can make this available to our other clients.”

Jamie Crummie, Too Good To Go co-founder said: “We’re pleased to see that our partnership with Sodexo has got off to such a great start, with UCL leading the way in reducing food waste across the Sodexo UK university sites.

“The meals saved across all the sites so far have meant that over 3,000 kg of food waste-related greenhouse gas emissions have been prevented, benefiting the environment as much as avoiding 120 hours driving in a car. We’re excited to watch our partnership grow even more and see our environmental impact as we do.”