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NRAs 2016 - Efficiency Initiative Of The Year

Winner: Melton Foods with Veris Strategies

The ‘Cultivate’ campaign transformed Melton Foods’ approach to waste. As well as maintaining zero waste to landfill as a baseline, the objective was to improve efficiencies that boost waste reduction and reuse opportunities at the business’s 10-acre site in Leicestershire.

Developed from a ‘Discovery’ audit conducted by partner Veris Strategies, which mapped the flow of waste throughout the business and highlighted waste hotspots, ‘Cultivate’ has led to a 50% reduction in on-site waste. More than 70% of material previously considered waste is now reused to benefit the community via a network of local social enterprises and charities.

Launched in June 2015, the project has inspired staff participation and promoted collaboration with customers. Staff now adopt a ‘waste to worth’ mentality, for example ensuring that all used wellington boots from 800 staff are donated to The Small Steps Project, while reusable goods such as furniture, hairnets, uniforms and surplus food products are donated to local community groups on a daily basis.

This initiative was a stand-out project through its holistic approach and strong presentation. Detailed evidence and results were showcased, from waste prevention and recycling to cost savings and community engagement

Judges’ view

Improved internal processes ensure unavoidable food waste is reused, either via animal feed, donations to community groups or sent for anaerobic digestion. More than 1,000 tonnes has been removed from landfill since May 2015, saving around 800 tonnes of carbon.

As a result of the company’s new segregation system, only 8% of waste a month goes to energy-from-waste treatment. Current cost savings stand at more than 40%, which will be reinvested into the campaign and further employee engagement – for example creating staff restaurant furniture from waste ingredient plastic buckets.

Employees have become actively engaged on the environmental agenda, supported by the results from a recent survey, which found 100% of respondents stated that Melton Foods is committed to operating sustainably.


  • Biffa Municipal and Biffa Resource, Recovery & Treatment
  • Café Spice Namasté
  • Donovan Nordic and British Bins
  • Eco Friendly Chef
  • Electrical Waste Recycling Group
  • Foresight Group
  • Hargreaves Logistics
  • SCC
  • Softech Global
  • Vehicle Weighing Solutions



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