The fastest moving business to achieve the Food Made Good Standard
Success takes time.
Eurostar started working with the Sustainable Restaurant Association in 2013, following the influence of Raymond Blanc, OBE, Head Chef of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Culinary Director for Eurostar and President of the SRA, who played an essential role in the development of Eurostar’s environmental program.
That first year of working together saw Eurostar achieve their first star in the Food Made Good Standard, the SRA’s sustainability audit for food service businesses. Since then, the high-speed rail service that connects the UK to mainland Europe has worked consistently to improve the sustainability of their on-board Standard Premier and Business Premier meals. Eurostar achieved two stars in 2014 and have driven their sustainability initiatives forwards to achieve three stars in 2019. This is the highest available rating in the Food Made Good Standard, demonstrating the rail company’s commitment to continual improvement when it comes to the sustainability of their on-board food and drink.
Collaboration builds responsibility.
Eurostar do what a catering business does but at high speed. The on-board catering presents a unique challenge, not only for Eurostar but for applying the Food Made Good framework to such a fast moving (literally!) operation.
For this reason, collaboration with all stakeholders is essential and has been key to Eurostar’s achievements from day one. To complete the Food Made Good Standard Eurostar have required the input from not only their on-board service provider Momentum but their caterers in the UK, France and Belgium. Now, taking part in the Food Made Good Standard forms a key part of contract decisions, with all caterers required to take part and help Eurostar maintain its 3 stars.
The collaboration also extends to The SRA’s work to help Eurostar navigate the Food Made Good Standard. Through working closely together we have broken down the task to ensure that as the questions have developed over the years, Eurostar and its partners have kept up with the challenges presented by a sustainability audit of this sort.
All sourcing and supply chain decisions are now made with a focus not only on cost but on social and environmental factors. Eurostar started working with all partners to bring a circular economy lens on everything they do. With the help of the SRA, Eurostar has set policies and commitments that all caterers are required to meet. These include laying out detailed animal welfare standards, commitments towards local sourcing and ensuring all staff are informed on sustainability issues, such as sourcing decisions and waste targets.
These policies help Eurostar to ensure that in times of uncertainty, they can rely on their suppliers and their supply chain to guarantee that all sourcing still meets the necessary standards.
Communication is the cherry on top.
Given the scale of the commitment and effort involved by multiple parties, it’s no wonder Eurostar wants to shout about its achievements. The 3 star Food Made Good logo sits proudly on all Business Premier and Standard Premier menus (although where once there were 100,000 paper menus printed each year, these have now been replaced with exclusively digital ones to save paper). This enables customers to understand that not only is Eurostar committed to serving delicious on-board meals, but that all these meals meet the highest environmental and social standards.
On top of this, all on board staff are kept up to date on the key sustainability information of each dish, such as what certification the fish holds to where the seasonal ingredients on their menus have been sourced from.
The journey doesn’t stop there!
One of the Eurostar’s main objectives is to remove single use plastic on-board. The brand has made huge strides in achieving this but understands that there is still a way to go. Eurostar has already removed on-board plastic bottles, replacing them with cans and is replacing any plastic packaging they can with compostable materials.
Eurostar knows that achieving 3 stars in the Food Made Good Standard needs constant reviewing and maintaining. The nature of sustainability means there is a need for constant positive change, which they are committed to.
Targets are in place to achieve the UN’s Race to Zero, using entirely renewable energy on all their trains by 2030 and to halve the amount of plastic used on board.
We can’t wait to see how Eurostar continues to highlight the best social and environmental decision making that goes into every Standard Premier and Business Premier meal served on-board and look forward to continuing the journey with them for another 10+ years!
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