One in five meals in Europe is consumed from out-of-home food services, namely restaurants, food deliveries and food outlets, including those found in supermarkets.
Even when eating out, consumers want to ensure that the food they consume does not have a negative impact on the environment or society.
A survey conducted on behalf of the Sustainable Restaurant Association revealed that over 80% of the respondents considered sustainability a deciding factor when choosing where to eat.
Food service operators have transformed their businesses in several ways, including reducing single-use plastics and promoting more sustainable diets.
Sourcing certified, sustainable palm oil is another differentiating factor for food services to drive businesses' social and environmental goals.
Many retailers have clear objectives and communications when it comes to sourcing certified sustainable palm oil for their private-label packaged food.
However, the same does not always apply to ready-to-eat food and meals sold at their facilities, like pastries or baked goods.
Palm oil can be used in food outlets as cooking oil or may be found in the ingredients of products used to prepare meals.
In most places, prepared meals do not feature ingredient information on individual items. Therefore, consumers have less visibility about the sustainability impact of their food.
Retailers that use palm oil in their food outlets can give customers peace of mind by acquiring RSPO supply chain certification.
RSPO-certified retailers, food outlets and restaurants highlight their commitment to using certified sustainable palm oil and its impact on the environment and people in palm oil producing countries.
By choosing sustainable palm oil, companies commit to a bigger cause: halting deforestation, respecting biodiversity and natural ecosystems, ending child labour, improving the livelihoods of thousands of small-scale farmers, and upholding labour and communities’ rights.
These results align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and can be part of a business' narrative once RSPO Standards are implemented in its sourcing policies.