Zero waste – how sustainability works for your food truck

Environmental protection is an issue that concerns us all. Also in the catering industry, limited resources are consumed, climate-damaging gases are emitted and non-recyclable waste is produced that destroys our planet. Only if we manage to live more sustainably can we stop climate change and leave an intact environment for future generations.

The awareness of sustainability and ecological action is constantly increasing, so that customers are also demanding more and more sustainable consumption. In this article you will find out how you can combine your food truck project with sustainability and thus not only contribute something good to the environmental protection, but also increase your customer loyalty.

Reusable containers for zero waste shopping

Every day a lot of waste is produced in the catering industry, which pollutes the environment. By optimising your waste management, you can ensure that your food trailer does not produce more waste than necessary. You can save waste in all operational processes: Be it in planning the dishes, purchasing, storing, preparing and serving the food.

Some gastronomy businesses such as Frea in Berlin or Silo in London are real role models in terms of sustainability and even manage to produce zero waste (i.e. no waste at all).

Already when planning your street food dishes you can make sure that no rubbish is created by the ingredients. Instead of relying on pre-cooked or baked goods that you buy in a packaged condition through wholesale, prepare your own bread, pasta, sauces, lemonades and the like. In this way, you can not only save waste, but also delight your guests with fresh and high-quality food.


  • Discuss with your suppliers how the food should be delivered: For example, in reusable crates and containers or packed in recyclable paper instead of plastic packaging.
  • If you shop carefully and accurately, you will waste less food.
  • By buying seasonal and regional products, you can also significantly improve your carbon footprint.

In addition to the many packaging materials, large quantities of waste are produced, especially through food waste. By storing your ingredients correctly, they won’t go bad even before they are prepared. Always arrange your food according to its best-before date.

How to offer environmentally friendly street food


  • Use better kitchen utensils, such as special knives for peeling vegetables, so that less food leftovers are collected.
  • Offer two portion sizes. In this way no food remains on the plate, should your guests only be hungry.
  • Reduce the size of your menu and remove dishes from your menu that are rarely ordered and offer your guests the opportunity to put together their own Street Food dish as they wish. This way, only what is actually eaten is ordered.
  • Offer meatless alternatives. Farm animal husbandry causes an extremely high amount of climate-damaging gases. With vegetable dishes you can keep the CO2 balance of your food truck small and expand your target group.

Do not use disposable plastic packaging for your take-away meals, but recyclable take-away dishes such as bowls, cups and drinking straws made of cardboard or bamboo to avoid unnecessary waste. How to offer environmentally friendly street food

Vegetable broth from leftovers

How sustainable cooking without waste works

Reducing packaging and food waste is already an approach that can save you a lot of waste in the preparation of your street food creations. But you can go even further and cook in a way that doesn’t produce any waste at all. Zero waste cooking simply recycles leftovers such as vegetable peels, cores, etc.

So cooking without leftovers is cooking with leftovers: you can make an aromatic vegetable broth from carrot skins, broccoli and cauliflower stems and other vegetable leftovers. You can make apple vinegar from the peel, core and pomace of untreated apples and crispy salad croutons from dry bread.

Organic waste becomes new soil

Compost food waste and separate waste properly

Food leftovers and bowls that you can no longer process can be recycled in a composting machine. In this way, what comes out of the earth can be turned back into soil and there are no further costs for further processing of the waste. Your agricultural partner will certainly enjoy your fertiliser.

Unfortunately, it is not always possible to avoid waste completely. Zero waste can sometimes be a real challenge. But protecting our environment is not about perfection. The small steps are also important and Low Waste is an approach that can already contribute a lot to environmental protection.

The important thing is to separate the unavoidable waste correctly so that as little residual waste as possible is produced and as much waste as possible can be recycled and turned into new products. The better you separate organic waste, plastic, glass, paper, wood and metals, the better the waste can be recycled.

Ecological detergent homemade from lemon juice

What else you can do for the environment with your food truck

Waste products can not only be recycled, but often also upcycled. So with a little creativity, old things can be turned into something new. Citrus peels with vinegar, for example, can be transformed into an eco-friendly cleaning agent and screw glasses can be turned into drinking glasses for your guests.

Another tip: Instead of printing menus that you throw away when you renew your offer, you can also write your dishes on a chalkboard.

In addition to avoiding waste, a food truck sustainability concept also includes a conscious use of electricity and water. With modern kitchen technology you can save costs in the long term and improve your CO2 balance.

Communicate your sustainability concept to your customers

With a sustainable food truck concept, you can not only contribute to the protection of our planet, but also increase your image and customer loyalty. Because sustainability is a convincing marketing tool with which you can positively differentiate yourself from your competitors.

Be transparent and inform your customers that by enjoying your street food they are doing something good for the environment and why. With a good conscience it can be enjoyed even better and the chances of client retention increase significantly.

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