NATIONAL REPORT—The hospitality industry accounts for much of the world’s food, water, and plastic waste. Hotels need a vast amount of energy and resources to run; on the flip side, the resources are also spent at a high rate. Hotels generate waste in all shapes and sizes as every hotel offers different services and facilities to their guests. Hotel kitchens generate food waste, and there are also large volumes of bathroom-related waste and various other kinds of trash that hotels deal with.
The good news is that hotel waste can be recycled. All you need is a proper understanding of the waste generated in your hotel premises and a few waste management initiatives. To begin with, let us look at the different kinds of waste generated by hotels:
- Food Waste—Preparation waste, food scraps, vegetable peels, and leftover meals from hotel kitchens are classified as food waste.
- General Waste—Non-recyclable materials from hotel room bins including plastic packaging, food scraps, and other bits.
- Glass Waste—Hotel bars generate glass waste such as broken drinking glasses, jars, bottles of drinks and other liquids.
- Packaging Waste—All cleaning, food, and other items come packaged in plastic.
- Textile Waste—Stained pieces of bed linen, towels, and toiletry waste are unusable for guests.
- Plastic Waste—Bathroom toiletries, drink bottles, and food packets are hotel plastic waste.
How to Dispose of Hotel Waste
The best way to manage hotel waste differs according to the type of waste you need to dispose of. If you wish to reduce the environmental impact of your business, it is best to recycle hotel waste. It prevents kilos of non-biodegradable materials from going into a landfill and paves the way for your hotel to develop an eco-friendly image in the industry.
Materials like paper, cardboard, glass, and plastic should be separated from the rest of the waste and recycled. Start by assigning waste types to your rubbish bins. It will help separate the trash at the source and make it easier for your waste management personnel to separate it. It is best to send food-related waste to a food waste management facility. It will be subjected to anaerobic digestion and converted to biogas—a source of renewable energy and biofertilizer. General waste can be sent to an incinerator, turning it into refuse-derived fuel.
Responsibly disposing of your hotel waste and recycling what you can is critical to your hotel’s environmental impact. The first step in efficient hotel waste management is to partner with an approved waste management provider who can collect and dispose of your waste following the laws and regulations of your government. We have accredited waste management experts and offer comprehensive waste management solutions to hotels.
How to Streamline Waste Management in Hotels
Here are five significant steps for improving hotel waste management in your hotel:
Modify Operational Habits
Studying the operational procedures of your hotel will help you identify the best ways to reduce waste and integrate waste management techniques in your hotel. You can make some simple modifications to reduce waste in your daily operations, for example:
- Using refillable dispensers for cleaning products;
- Using refillable dispensers in bathrooms for toiletries;
- Serving meals in dishware and china instead of disposable utensils;
- Install a water dispenser on each floor and place clean glass bottles in every room for guests to fill for drinking water;
- Invest in waste management equipment such as trash compactors to reduce the size of waste material; and
- Consider a baler machine for cardboard waste.
Conduct a Food Waste Audit
Track and analyze the food waste generated by your hotel restaurant. There are two main aspects of a food waste audit—designing a food waste log system that helps you identify the kind of food going to waste, ingredients generating the maximum waste, and the volume of food waste generated. The second aspect is the traffic your restaurant receives. Based on historical data, you can predict if more or fewer people will visit your restaurant on a particular day. Order your ingredients accordingly to minimize food waste.
Develop a Food Recovery Plan
Identify local food banks and nonprofit organizations that accept food donations in your vicinity. Organizations like Feeding America accept food donations to combat food wastage and scarcity. Another way to combat food wastage is to create a composting pit in your garden. You can turn uneaten food, vegetable peels and food scraps into nutrient-rich soil.
Adopt Waste Classification
Offer your hotel staff training in waste classification. Classifying waste at the source helps minimize waste, offers you the chance to reuse materials, and improves how waste is disposed of in your hotel.
Monitor & Evaluate Waste Management Programs
Taking the initiative to improve waste management is insufficient. You must constantly monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of the program. For effective waste management in hotels, continuously exploring new ways to recycle and dispose of hotel waste is necessary. Hotel associations and other waste management organizations offer guides and toolkits that give helpful tips for improving hotel waste management.
About the Author
Erich Lawson is passionate about saving the environment through effective recycling techniques and modern innovations. He works with Compactor Management Co. and writes on various topics related to recycling, including tips and advice on how balers, compactors and shredders can be used to reduce industrial waste. He loves helping businesses understand how to lower their monthly garbage bills and increase revenue from recycling.