The Food Made Good Rating is the
definitive statement of sustainable food service
It is a sign for staff, suppliers and customers that this is a progressive business that understands that doing the right thing is core to its operations, and not just an add on. The rating is what drives our ‘star rating’ accreditation, which is a key way for our members to differentiate themselves and drive forward change.
Completed online in the Food Made Good community, the rating is an extended survey capturing activity across three main pillars of sustainability: Sourcing, Society & Environment – simply put it’s the food on the plate, the relationship with people and the impact on the planet.
The pillars are made up of ten key areas because we understand that every business has unique challenges and works towards different sustainability projects. Therefore we weight each of the key areas equally, giving businesses the chance to showcase the initiatives most important to them.
We collect evidence on the information provided by businesses about the way they source their food. Businesses must also verify the information provided in high scoring areas.
We take a completed survey and using the weighting system described below, we calculate the businesses sustainability score. A business may achieve one, two, three or no stars depending on their score.
We ask businesses to formalise practices by writing them as policies and we award points for having documentation in place. This helps staff and suppliers understand and adhere to the business’ values. Questions around policies are currently worth 10% of each section and this weighting increases in subsequent years as we recognise the need to share success and commit to paper a path for improvement.
The bulk of points are awarded based on current practices at the business. To score maximum points in this section we focus on buying ethically sourced products. We provide resources and support on how to do this in the community.
To celebrate businesses going above and beyond, we explore how they create change, build momentum and influence their customers and other businesses. To gain maximum points in this section, a business must promote it’s initiatives to customers, share it’s successes among our community, aim for continual improvements to sustainability and train staff in each key area to help spread influence. These questions will have increased value in subsequent ratings as we ask the sector leaders in sustainability to influence wider change.
Celebrate Local & Seasonal
Serving locally sourced and seasonal produce protects the environment and provides the British agricultural industry with much needed support. Half of diners tell us they want restaurants to serve local produce, yet Britain is more reliant on food imports now than it has been at any other time over the last 40 years. Best performers in this area are building loyalty with local suppliers, and are enjoying more opportunities for creativity and flexibility by letting produce dictate their menus.
Serve More Veg & Better Meat
Serving more veg and better meat is healthier for both diners and the planet. By reducing a dish’s meat portion from 200g to 150g, per plate carbon emissions can be cut by a third. That said, as only 18% of diners think that a good meal requires meat, is it even needed at all? Best performers in this area are capitalising on the flexitarian trend, often filling to capacity mid-week.
Source Fish Responsibly
Sourcing fish responsibly keeps our oceans healthy for years to come. With 90% of fish stocks being overfished, and our over-reliance on just five species, marine populations have halved since the 1970s. Best performers in this area are serving no fish rated ‘red’ by the Marine Conservation Society.
Support Global Farmers
Supporting farmers helps to keep supply chains healthy and predictable. Some coffee farmers receive as little as 1% of the value that their coffee sells for. With younger generations moving away from rural areas to take jobs that are less strenuous and better paid, a global shortage of farmers is not far away. Best performers in this area are building greater loyalty among their suppliers, securing the best produce, and have developed a sense of purpose in their brand.
Treat Staff Fairly
Treating people fairly, especially staff, is good for business. Not only do 94% customers want tips to go to staff, 50% of employers reported that the Living Wage had improved both recruitment and retention. Happy staff lead to better service and to more satisfied customers. Best performers in this area are attracting more new candidates than ever before, and are experiencing much lower staff turnover.
Support the Community
Supporting the community through volunteering time, raising money, donating surplus food, and working with local community groups can make a huge difference. Over the course of 4 years, restaurants signed up to StreetSmart raised over £6.3 million for the homeless simply by adding a voluntary £1 to a table’s bill through November- December each year. Best performers in this area are developing closer ties with their local neighbourhoods, and their staff are being motivated by the new enriching experiences this provides.
Feed People Well
Feeding people well helps save lives and could help save the NHS over £6 billion every year. Diets that are low in veg are associated with more the 20,000 premature deaths across the UK. Yet, today, more than a third of the veg children eat is still highly processed, with 17% of the average child’s veg coming from pizzas and baked beans. Best performers in this area are serving two portions of veg on every child’s plate.
Value Natural Resources
Learning to value natural resources makes energy bills light on the pocket and light on the planet. Restaurants use over twice as much energy per square foot compared to other commercial buildings, but simple things like turning the thermostat down by 1°C can reduce energy bills by 7%. Best performers in this area are implementing innovative ways to reduce their bills and their impact on the planet.
Waste No Food
Wasting food burns both money and natural resources. The land needed to grow all the food we don’t eat is larger than the size of China. Food waste costs restaurants an average of 97p per meal, however, a 1300% return on investment could be seen if that money was pre-emptively spent on reducing food loss and waste instead. The best performers in this area are seeing savings of thousands after deciding to monitor, track, and reduce their food waste.
Reduce Reuse Recycle
Reducing single use disposable waste, reusing whenever possible, and recycling the rest reduces the financial and environmental impact of the things we throw away. 80% of the packaging waste the foodservice industry sends to landfill could be recycled instead. Best performers in this area are finding new ways to serve drinks and food and helping change the behaviour of their suppliers and customers in the process.