Organisers’ Implementation Plan

We know as an event organiser you are extremely busy, so we’ve made it easy for you with this week-by-week suggested Food Waste Implementation Plan for Event Organisers:

5 Weeks Before Event:

Five weeks before your event:

Who What Details
Your team Familiarise Familiarise yourself and your event team with the stallholder step-by-step guide, so you are ready to support your stallholders and answer any questions.
Stallholders First contact
  • Contact your stallholders via email (and phone if necessary) to notify them of this FoodStallSavers initiative at your event, and what is required from them. They are at the heart of a successful event, so it’s important to get them motivated and on board right from the start.   Use these easy cut and paste email template.
  • Outline your expectations for their participation and performance. Consider building stallholder participation into their contracts.
  • Provide them the link to start exploring the issue of food waste for events and stallholders.
  • Agree on whom within their business will be your contact, and let them know they will hear from you next week and periodically until the Event.
Waste contractor First contact If you haven’t already secured your waste service provider for the event, it can be better to negotiate upfront rather than after the contract has been signed. If you already have an existing waste contractor, advise them of the FoodStallSavers initiative, and discuss opportunities to work together towards this sustainability initiative. Offer to promote their business on your website as a partner of the sustainability initiative if they are able to offer additional support in-kind.

Initiatives and infrastructure you may want to discuss with your waste contractor:

  • Food waste collection bins:
    • front of house for consumers (120L with clear signage)
    • back of house for stallholders (120L with clear signage)
    • individual buckets for stallholders (20L)
  • Food waste measurement methods:
    • Methods to measure the weight (and/or volume) of total food waste diverted from landfill (including fraction that is front of house vs back of house). Measuring the waste before it is removed is a good way to establish a baseline, and feedback to your stallholders, visitors and partners just how much waste you saved or diverted from landfill.

4 Weeks Before Event:

Who What Details
Stallholders Food waste initiatives Email using these templates (and if needed follow-up call) your stallholders, introducing the step-by-step guide for stallholders. This is an easy guide with tips for identifying hidden food waste in their food production chain, from preparation through to serving meals. There is a template for stallholders to develop their own personalised Action Plan.  

3 Weeks Before Event

Who What Details
Stallholders Follow-up Check in with stallholders how they are going with identifying their hidden food waste culprits, and which actions they are implementing (or planning to implement) in the form of their Action Plan.

Collect stories if you will be producing case studies for your pre-event communications or handout material/signage on the day.

2 Weeks Before Event

Who What Details
Stallholders Follow-up Check in with stallholders how they are progressing with actions to reduce their food waste as identified in their Action Plan. Email and follow-up call as needed.
Waste contractor Clarify resources If implementing a food waste collection scheme, clarify that everything discussed is on track, including if and how food waste will be weighed before it is taken away.

Confirm the signage that will accompany bins in order to reduce contamination issues.

1 Week Before Event

Who What Details
Stallholders Confirmation Check in with stallholders what they are planning to do on the day (make sure this is in writing, even in an email), and confirm if they will be provided with food waste bins to collect the inedible food waste, and what they are to do with their leftover edible food.
Waste contractor Confirmation Confirm the agreed number of bins (Stallholder buckets, back-of house, front of house) and weighing (if relevant), emptying, removal, and fate (composting or energy generation).
Your team Resources
& info sheets
Make sure your team have printed off all the necessary resources and info sheets

At the Festival

Who What Details
Stallholders Set up Provide signage and handouts as required to stallholders

If collecting food waste, provide bins and instructions for disposing of food and organic waste.

Waste contractor Set up Confirm the location of back-of-house and front-of-house bins, and (if relevant) process for measuring and recording collected food waste.
Your team Set up Display signage promoting the green credentials of your event, including the food waste initiative and efforts of stallholders [See resources]
  Information stall Set up your information stall with signage, information on the initiative and handouts for event visitors.
  Monitor waste collection Keep in touch with your waste contractor about how the food waste collection is going, and any issues, such as contamination front-of-house or back-of-house.
  Photos Don’t forget to take photos for your website and media

1 to 2 Weeks After the Event

Who What Details
Stallholders Thank you & Evaluation Importantly, send your stallholders a big thank you email (you can easily cut and paste this template), and ask them how easy and interesting the food waste initiative for them. The initiative is an important part of the event and you want to refine it for next year. Either by phone, email survey or survey monkey. You may wish to provide another reward for answering the survey. Here are some suggested questions:

  • How easy/effortless it was to participate
  • How useful it was to participate
  • What could be done differently, or what additional things could be done, to make the initiative more useful/interesting?
  • If you were to participate in an initiative like this again, which would be your preferred form(s) of communication? (email/phone/face-to-face etc)
  • Have you learned anything new about avoiding/managing food waste that you could put into practice in the future in your food stall business?
Waste contractor Results and debrief Debrief with your waste contractor how the collection went. Discuss any issues, including contamination.

Ask for the results of the weighing, and calculate the amount of food and organic waste collected and diverted. Compare with previous years to understand savings in waste and waste management costs.

Your team Debrief As part of your Event debrief, make sure you explicitly include the food waste initiative – What worked well? What could be done better next time? Actions & Next steps.
  Capture the successes If you have time, collate the photos, stories, and brief report from stallholders what initiatives they implemented, in addition to lessons learnt for next time.