Bakery specialist Butt Foods Ltd has cut its landfill waste by two thirds, significantly reduced its food miles and introduced energy-saving measures at its Nottingham bakery.
Three years ago the company, which produces a range of bakery products for the UK and European foodservice and manufacturing markets, began looking at ways of reducing its carbon footprint.
After implementing a series of changes, the company – and its customers – are now reaping the benefits.
The move has saved the company £5,000 a year in landfill waste costs alone, cut the number of lorry journeys made in the past two years to deliver naan breads by 58, and has allowed the firm to become more competitive, more efficient and more environmentally friendly, said managing director David Williams.
“We are really proud that we’ve been able to reduce our environmental impact,” he said. “Not only is this good news for our carbon footprint and the environment in general, it’s also good news for our customers because we are operating more efficiently.”
He was inspired to look into ways of reducing waste partly by his son Harrison, now ten.
“He would come home from school and tell me to separate our home waste and behave responsibly as far as the environment is concerned, and when I looked around I realised there was more we could do at our manufacturing unit,” added David.
Butt Foods, which bakes a range of products, including naan breads, flat breads, top loader hot dog rolls, sub rolls, canapé bases and fruit breads, introduced a number of measures to reduce waste and become more efficient. This included:
- Asking suppliers to alter the way they packaged ingredients by putting them in recyclable containers
- Redesigning the firm’s own packaging to increase the number of items that could fit onto each pallet
The firm, which was established in 1990, and now bakes up to 60 million products per year at its manufacturing unit in The Midway, Lenton Industrial Estate, Nottingham, also installed environmentally friendly compressors onto its blast freezer, which has led to a drop in the amount of electricity the company uses.
“We blast freeze our products immediately after baking to maintain freshness, and by installing the latest units and replacing older, less efficient, technology we have been able to reduce the energy use of the equipment by 44%,” added David.
The business has cut the amount it sends to landfill from three skips to one skip per week.
Over the past two years, on one line alone, Butt Foods has significantly reduced the number of lorry load deliveries as a result of more efficient packaging and packing on each pallet. Figures show it has been able to send out 1,500 fewer pallets of naan breads, which has resulted in 58 fewer lorry loads, even though overall sales of naan breads have risen 30% in the last three years.
“Not only has it reduced food miles and saved on transport and fuel costs, there have also been associated savings, such as boxes being smaller, using less tape and polythene in bags, and of course there has been less space required for storage here and at our customers’ premises, which is harder to define,” said David.
“Our experience is an illustration of what can be achieved when a company sets out to make itself more environmentally friendly and less wasteful. I am very pleased that the whole team at Butt Foods got behind our efforts. They should be justifiably proud of the results, which show that it’s virtually always possible to become more efficient without compromising on quality or customer service.
“We are also grateful to our ingredients suppliers and to refrigeration engineers Transcool (UK) Ltd who helped us achieve our aims.”
Now the company is switching its attention to making its products more healthy by turning the spotlight on reformulation.
For more information visit www.buttfoods.co.uk
Press release issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR www.perfect10pr.co.uk