Iberostar Group will implement Artificial Intelligence to be Zero Waste

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Iberostar Group will implement Artificial Intelligence to be Zero Waste
Source: Grupo Iberostar
September 29, 2022

The chain aims to reduce food waste by 50% in the first year, in line with its goal of being landfill-free by 2025

On the United Nations International Food Waste Day, the Iberostar Group announces its ambitious plan to install artificial intelligence in its more than 100 hotels globally to reduce food waste and save more than 1,600 tons of food in the first year.

This great commitment of the company will become a reality thanks to an innovative system, based on the technological innovation of the Winnow company, which will contribute to ending food waste and bringing the company closer to its goal of being free of waste sent to landfill in 2025 An objective to which the Iberostar Group committed itself in 2020 with its own 2030 Agenda, in which it also works to be carbon neutral by 2030.

Sabina Fluxá, Vice President and CEO of the Iberostar Group, explains that “Reducing food waste is key to meeting our 2030 Agenda goals.

The value of food cannot be underestimated and at Iberostar we want to help ensure that it is not wasted. In addition to training our employees to address the problem of food waste, we put in place this innovative system aimed at reducing the amount of waste we produce without affecting the customer experience. We are convinced that the use of cutting-edge technology, training and innovation aimed at reducing food waste will help us reduce climate impacts, achieve our objectives and achieve broader goals that affect the entire planet."

According to Marc Zornes, CEO and co-founder of Winnow: “Sustainability is a top priority for Iberostar and we are excited to support them in addressing the issue of food waste. Iberostar hotels that already use our artificial intelligence technology are reducing food waste by more than 35%. While we are proud of this achievement, the recognition belongs to the Iberostar employees who work with our analytics every day. We look forward to working with them and their partners around the world in the future as we increase our impact together."

Since 60% of Iberostar's waste is food, reducing food waste is an integral part of achieving this goal. This commitment is also aligned with the United Nations SDG 12.3, which aims to halve global per capita food waste by 2030. Food waste accounts for up to 10% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. and fighting it is necessary to fight climate change. Addressing food waste will also have an impact on Grupo Iberostar's financial results, as it is estimated that it will save between 8% and 20% on food costs.

Since 2021, Winnow artificial intelligence-based technology has been installed in five Iberostar hotels, saving 618,000 meals per year to date, the equivalent of 1,065 tons of CO2e per year. After successful pilot programs at Iberostar hotels in Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America, Iberostar is now rolling out the technology globally across all hotels starting in September this year. Typically, establishments using Winnow's technology cut food waste in half in 12 to 24 months.

How artificial intelligence works at Iberostar
The Winnow systems implemented in Iberostar kitchens, based on artificial intelligence, recognize exactly what is thrown away, what is saved and how smarter decisions can be made based on daily and real data.

Kitchen staff, trained to work with the tool, use a tablet to identify discarded food, while a camera, capable of capturing up to 600 different foods, identifies the category of each waste. A scale measures the weight and sends a message to the chef, indicating the cost, weight and amount of food wasted.

All this data is uploaded to the cloud, where each day's food waste is recorded and analyzed. With the preparation of daily, weekly and monthly reports, Iberostar kitchens receive the necessary information to promote improvements in their production processes. Those improvements ultimately help Iberostar save money and reduce its environmental impact.

Using artificial intelligence in its kitchens will allow Iberostar to improve the customer experience and the quality of service. This improves efficiency in the kitchen, paying more attention to environmentally friendly materials and innovating with techniques such as slow cooking.

Savings data at Iberostar

  • Iberostar's objective is to reduce food waste by 50% in the first year of implementation of the Winnow system.
  • For each hotel, it is estimated that the savings will be 28 tons of food waste per year.
  • In Europe alone, Iberostar will save up to 1.3 million meals, 521 tons of food and 2,241 tons of CO2.
  • In America, Iberostar will save around 3 million meals, 1,118 tons of food and 5,110 tons of CO2 per year.
  • In total, with the implementation of this system, Iberostar will stop throwing away 5 million meals per year, more than 1,600 tons of food, and will stop emitting approximately 8,000 tons of CO2 per year.
  • Iberostar's economic savings will exceed 7 million dollars per year.

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