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Journal of Foodservice Business Research

For a Special Issue on

Sustainability Strategies in the Foodservice Industries: From Agricultural Production to Final Consumption

Manuscript deadline
15 April 2024

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Special Issue Editor(s)

Christian Bux, University of Bari Aldo Moro, Department of Economics, Management and Business Law
[email protected]

Vera Amicarelli, University of Bari Aldo Moro, Department of Economics, Management and Business Law
[email protected]

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Sustainability Strategies in the Foodservice Industries: From Agricultural Production to Final Consumption

The measurement of material and energy flows plays a central role in protecting the environment and tackling climate change and despite the growing body of research on sustainable development in the hospitality and foodservice sectors (Berniak-Woźny and Rataj, 2023; Xu et al., 2021; Sherman et al., 2019), the analysis of canteen, restaurant, hotel and hospital circular strategies is still under-researched.

On the global scale, it results that hotels generate about 289 000 t each year, of which about 80 000 t are food waste. Specifically, 0.8 to 1.2 kg of solid and organic waste per guest per day have been estimated, and such an amount doubles on checkout days. Hotel waste is composed of about 44% of organic matter, 16% of glass, 13% of plastics, 11% of paper, 9% of cardboard and 7% of unsorted waste. In terms of emissions to air, hotels and restaurants are responsible for about 180 kg of CO2eq per square meter (Bux et al., 2022; Nisa et al., 2017). Further, latest studies on the topic (Sherman et al., 2019) have discussed that the healthcare sector contributes to energy consumption and pollution to high extents, negatively impacting the environment and the human health and contribution up to 5% of the global greenhouse gas emissions (NHS, 2020).

In the European Union, it is estimated that more that 84 million tons (Mt) of food waste have been generated in 2018, from agricultural production to final consumption, and such an amount represents about 13% of the entire food produced in Europe (Caldeira et al., 2023). Specifically, 56 to 80% are generated at household and foodservice, which means 47 to 67 Mt (Caldeira et al., 2019; Caldeira et al., 2021). Such a material amount corresponds, on average, to over 6% of the entire EU greenhouse gases emissions associated with anthropic activities (European Commission, 2023). Further, food waste is responsible for freshwater consumption, being its water footprint estimated at 250 km3, as well as for land loss, which is approx. 1.4 billion hectares of land (Poore and Nemecek, 2018; Our World in Data, 2020).

Although several authors and practitioners have experienced, explored, and tested circular economy and sustainability strategies in the hospitality and foodservice industries, comprehensive and critical strategies need to be identified. The call for papers entitled “Sustainability challenges in the foodservice industries: From agricultural stage to final consumption” aims at contributing, either through research or review articles, to the theoretical and empirical studies in the field of sustainability in the hospitality and foodservice industries. Transversal and multidisciplinary contributions dealing with circular economy and sustainable strategies are requested, from agricultural production to final consumption, with specific reference to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Also, studies related to the measurement of the circular economy are needed, in the light of the novel technical specification UNI/TS 11820:2022 on the “Measurement of Circularity – Methods and Indicators for Measuring Circular Processes in Organizations”.

The call for papers asks for managerial and theoretical strategies about organic and solid waste reduction, as well as toward the development of consumers’ sustainable behaviors to be achieved through education and financial investment in the foodservice industries. Further, it is open to contributions related to open innovation and technology, food traceability, precision agriculture, blockchain, design thinking, environmental impact assessment and energy efficiency studies. The submissions should explore the following (not exhaustive) topics:

  • Material flow analysis in the hospitality and foodservice industry
  • Life cycle assessment in the hospitality and foodservice industry
  • Qualitative and quantitative methods to minimize organic and solid waste
  • Sustainable strategies to reduce energy and water consumption
  • Circular economy strategies to prevent, reuse, recycle and recover organic and solid waste
  • Circular economy, eco-efficiency and material cycle monitoring indicators
  • Sustainable valorization pathways for organic and solid foodservice waste
  • Sustainable tourism and circular economy
  • Sustainability in the agri-food sector
  • Food traceability, precision agriculture, innovation in the agri-food industry
  • Blockchain technology in the foodservice and in the wine industry

Submission Instructions

The authors willing to contribute may contact the Guest Editors regarding topics of interest or any questions/suggestions via e-mail at [email protected] and [email protected]. The Guest Editors will provide feedback to the contributor as soon as possible.

Please, select "Sustainability Strategies in the Foodservice Industries: From Agricultural Production to Final Consumption" when submitting your paper to ScholarOne.

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