Behind the Headlines

Analysis, comment and opinion on the news headlines within the foodservice industry

Get real about the race to net zero

In the rush to make a public net zero commitment some companies are failing to question the intrinsic sustainability of their business models, argues Nick Hughes. Has your business set a net zero target for carbon emissions? If the answer is no then there’s every chance you’ll soon be in the minority. When the government…
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Meat bites back

Regenuary is a provocative alternative to Veganuary. But can it encourage a more nuanced debate about ‘better’ meat? David Burrows reports. In the past couple of years Veganuary has hogged the headlines as Brits promise to give up meat and dairy products in the first month of the year. In 2021, half a million had…
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Are new calorie targets an empty threat?

PHE has published demanding new guidelines for calorie reduction, but with the body due to be axed and targets still voluntary will businesses take them seriously? Nick Hughes reports. In March 2018, PHE published a paper which challenged all sectors of the food industry to reduce the calories in products that contribute significantly to children’s…
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Will extreme weather leave the Out of Home sector high and dry?

A record breaking dry spell poses a threat to both food production and pricing at a time when the foodservice industry is suffering the effects of Covid-19, writes Nick Hughes. Bad news comes in threes, or so the saying goes. For UK farmers battling disruption from the coronavirus pandemic, the news that May 2020 was…
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Covid-19: Year dot for CSR

The way in which businesses respond to the crisis will provide a baseline against which all future claims of corporate responsibility will be judged, argues Nick Hughes. Corporate social responsibility has always been a difficult discipline to assess. Almost every large business will present to the world a contract it claims to hold with society…
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Unpacking the problem with life cycle analyses

Companies are desperate to understand which packaging materials have the lowest environmental impact, but are life cycle analyses being manipulated and misused to present skewed results? By David Burrows Huhtamaki’s new life cycle analysis (LCA) research comparing different types of cups makes some pretty bold claims. This one in particular stands out: “In most everyday…
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Greenwash: the dirty word is back

In the post-Blue Planet era of anti-plastic sentiment, dubious claims regarding biodegradability and sustainability are on the rise, finds David Burrows. But are companies being crafty or just confused? Last year, Ancol Pet Products ran the following claim on its website for a product it was selling: "Refill Poop Bag Rolls … These thick waste…
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GLASS HALF FULL: meals matched and ingredients tracked

Our latest roundup of worthy initiatives features two smaller players with a big appetite for making a difference. Transparency tracker. The threat to food safety posed by Brexit is well known to policy makers who are busy scrambling to plug gaps once the UK loses full access to EU risk management systems. One Cotswolds supermarket…
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Plastics package: polls apart and stirring trouble

UKHospitality seeks a delay on stirrers ban, recycling rates are on the up – and our inbox is swamped by surveys. By David Burrows. Here at the Package we have been considering a ban – a ban on consumer polls about plastic. Please do keep sending them – the “stats” give us a chuckle of…
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