20 January 2020

The first six months of the Regent Street & St James's Food Waste Pledge by The Crown Estate delivers exciting innovations from all restaurants

The ground-breaking Regent Street & St James’s Food Waste Pledge by The Crown Estate, launched in May 2019, has empowered restauranteurs to innovate within their operations and reinvent menus to tackle food waste.

With 12 restaurants now signed up to achieve a 25% reduction in food waste by May 2020, the Food Waste Pledge is delivering exciting and innovative solutions to reduce wastage. This has included the creation of entirely new dishes made from previously discarded ingredients and inventive reuse of offcuts in other dishes.     

Created by The Crown Estate, the Food Waste Pledge aims to tackle food waste in Central London and make a contribution to tackling the global food waste crisis which sees one third of all food produce sent to landfill, which results in large volumes of avoidable greenhouse gas emissions.

Innovations from participating restaurants include:

  • Hawksmoor Air Street’s new cocktail menu has reduced inedible garnishes by 50%. The mixologists have also created a drink that uses a cordial made from flat prosecco.
  • Ristorante Frescobaldi has reduced its bread waste by 50% by removing bread baskets and enabling diners to choose how much they’d like, as well as creating dishes such as a Panzanella from any surplus
  • tibits designed imaginative dishes out of excess peels and parts of vegetables that typically would go to waste, such as a Cauliflower Leaf Muttakos and Beetroot Tapenade from juice pulp.
  • Café Murano has created a new Maltagliati dish, using rocket stems, leftover cheeses and offcuts of the fresh egg pasta made in-house each day
  • Laurent at Hotel Café Royal has created a seasonal artichoke velouté, using the entirety of the artichoke in the dish. The stock for the soup is also created from excess peelings, and surplus brioche from the breakfast service is served alongside
  • Scully re-worked often-wasted ingredients to create special dishes, such as beef rump cap: which is aged for 28 days and turned into Tonto’s tartar. Scully has also addressed its supply chain, with food suppliers sharing other restaurants’ excess ingredients with the team to further spark creativity and avoid waste.

The Food Waste Pledge is inspired by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 12.3 which aims to reduce food waste by 50% per capita by 2030 and is supported by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) who are providing restaurant teams with expert advice on how best to implement lasting change. 

For visitors, the Regent Street & St James’s Food Waste Pledge offers the chance to dine at London restaurants safe in the knowledge that these destinations are committed to a more sustainable food future. With the UK food service industry waste levels currently able to fill The Shard almost 11 times each year, and producing over 1 million tonnes of waste annually, now is the time for all to act.

With 2019 marking Regent Street’s 200th Anniversary, The Crown Estate is taking the opportunity to not only look back at the heritage of the area as London’s first shopping street, but to also continue to positively shape the future through these forward thinking initiatives. As part of this celebration, Regent Street created a compelling new podcast, ‘Shaping the Future by Regent Street’, and hosted a ‘Future of Food’ discussion with Vogue’s sustainability writer Melissa Hemsley and SRA Co-Founder Henry Dimbleby, OBE, as well as the sustainability director at Hawksmoor, to support the Food Waste Pledge. 

Katerina Mercury at The Crown Estate says: ‘ For us this is just the beginning, we will continue to work hard to tackle food waste in partnership with the plethora of high calibre restaurants and cafés throughout Regent Street and St James’s and look forward to seeing what the next six months and beyond will bring.’ 

Aisling Hayes, Senior Project Manager at the Sustainable Restaurant Association says: ‘We are absolutely thrilled that we are at the halfway point of The Crown Estate’s brilliant but ambitious project to slash food waste by a quarter across 12 restaurants. We’ve seen the hard work, dedication and creativity invested by whole teams in keeping food on the plate and out of the bin.' 

Building on the success and innovation demonstrated at this six month point, The Crown Estate, founders of the pledge, is proud to welcome three new participants: Michelin-starred Sabor, Ziggy Green, and just-opened plant based Neat Burger. Today, a total of 12 across both destinations are now committed to collectively reducing food waste by 25% by May 2020, including: Brasserie Zedel; Angela Hartnett’s Café Murano; Frescobaldi; Hawksmoor Air Street; Hotel Café Royal; ikoyi; Scully; Sketch and tibits. In addition to these London favourites, Vacherin, the caterers to the in-house café at The Crown Estate are also participating.

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