Compass Group UK & Ireland

Nudging project to ease ecofriendly meal choices

IMAGO / Addictive Stock

Make the ecofriendly choice easier is what's behind Compass Groups roll out of  "eco-labelling" dishes across workplace catering sites. It follows a pilot project with researchers in the Livestock, Environment and People labelling (LEAP) group at the University of Oxford.

To help consumers make more sustainable choices Catering company Compass Group UK & Ireland has decided to stick to the use of eco-labelling after a pilot. The LEAP initiative sees dishes labelled A-E, to highlight which meals have a higher (E) or lower (A) environmental impact.

The accumulated data is shared with the LEAP researchers who are monitoring whether eco-labels nudge consumers to make more sustainable and planet-friendly meal choices. Scoring is based on greenhouse gas emissions, water scarcity, water pollution and biodiversity loss. The E-A values are determined by using environmental impact data from the Poore & Nemecek dataset and menu item ingredient information.

Nudging-effect works

Initially trialled by the business and industry Compass brand Eurest at 15 industry client sites that remained operational throughout the pandemic, the business has seen positive results in relation to consumer behaviour. LEAP aims to understand the health, environmental, social and economic effects of meat and dairy production and consumption, in order to provide evidence and tools for promoting healthy and sustainable diets. Other areas of focus include availability of plant-based options on menus, placement of products and creative naming trials. Working with LEAP, dishes descriptions were also reviewed and renamed – providing more detail and description of what was within each dish. For example, the Big Veggie Bowl has become a hearty roasted squash and broccoli bowl with maple glazed lentils.
About Compass Group
Compass Group PLC is one of the world's leading food services companies. The group claims annual sales of 20.2 billion British pounds (€23.23 billion) through Sept. 30, 2020. The company operates in around 45 countries, employs around 550,000 people and says it serves over 5.5 billion meals a year. Compass Group specializes in the provision of food and various services in the core sectors of Business & Industry, Healthcare & Seniors, Education, Sports & Leisure and Defence, Offshore & Remote and has an established brand portfolio.