Restaurants and hotels in the capital are being urged to save cash by cutting waste through a new scheme supported by Mayor Boris Johnston.
The Imperial restaurant in south west London said it had saved up to £10,000 alone by simply offering customers different portion sizes, measuring side dishes in cups, and using leftover food for its soup of the day and menu specials.
Director Kate MacWhirter said that the scheme had been an eye-opener for the business, and that it had been able to redirect the money it had saved into paying for another member of staff.
Now 200 more businesses are being invited to join the scheme, which is funded by the Mayor of London, the European Regional Development Fund and the London Waste and Recycling Board.
The campaign's overall target is to divert more than 1,000 tonnes of food away from landfill and save small restaurants, canteens, hotels, pubs and food outlets over £350,000 by 2015. It aims to help raise staff awareness of what not to throw away.
WRAP estimates that three quarters of wasted food in the sector could have been eaten, with the average cost of waster for hospitality outlets at around £10,000 per year.
Senior operations manager at the SRA, Victoria Moorhouse, said: "By making staff aware of what they are throwing away and how this impacts the bottom line helps to shape behaviour change and this is the key to making change last. The lessons we learn will help us to drive down food waste across the UK hospitality sector, saving businesses money while also diverting waste from landfill."
The scheme was launched in September last year in a bid to help reduce the capital's estimated four million tonnes of food waste from hospitality businesses (whose food waste is estimated to make up 41% of their total waste, according to WRAP).
Businesses can get involved at www.foodsave.org.