Food Waste Business Ideas

Food Waste Business Ideas

Do you want to know some of the profitable food waste business ideas that can help you become an entrepreneur? Or you are looking for the best business ideas that can help you solve the world’s problems. If any of these describes you, you are in the right place.

Specifically, we have 10 different food waste business ideas in this blog post to make it easier for you to choose which business ideas to go for.

Before we discuss in detail the food waste business ideas that help you build a successful business venture, let’s consider what the concept of food waste is all about.

Food Waste Business Ideas; An Overview

What is food waste?

Food waste is the process of intentionally discarding edible and inedible food items. 

This could be plant produce, processed, raw or cooked foods.

The keyword here remains the intentional disposal of useful food items.

Food waste could occur due to several reasons, such as loss of nutritional value, poor storage, and individual negligence, among other things.

We’ll dive deeper into this later in this post, but first, we focus on food waste as a business.

The food waste business involves creating a product or service out of the food that might be thrown into the trash.

In other words, it’s the business of turning food “waste” into “wealth.”

Furthermore, food waste happens at any part of the food supply chain – It could either be at the production or distribution stage.

Also, it can occur during processing, transporting, retailing, cooking, or consuming. 

Food waste causes a lot of problems for us in general.

Let’s look at this issue.

Problems Caused By Food Waste

Economic loss

Food wastage causes economic loss.

A lot of resources go into producing, processing, and distributing food.

According to a report published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, approximately one-third of food intended for human consumption is wasted.

By estimate, around 1.3 billion tonnes of food are lost each year, resulting in losses of up to $940 billion.

This means that a significant amount of resources invested in food production is used in vain.

Overall, anytime there is food wastage, the money invested in its production goes down the drain.

Generates Harmful Toxin Called Methane 

Methane production is also another problem caused by dumping food in landfills.

To be precise, methane is a colourless, odourless, and flammable gas comprising hydrogen and carbon, affecting climatic change.

So, the food deposited in landfills undergoes an aerobic decomposition to generate methane which causes harm to the environment.

A study revealed that food waste accounts for about 6-8% of human-generated emissions.

Consequently, making food waste a major contributor to global warming.

Some of the harms caused by food waste to humans and the environment include;

  • Water pollution
  • Air pollution
  • Changes in breathing
  • Unconsciousness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  •  Numbness, among others.

Water Wastage

Water wastage is yet another problem that food waste causes.

Generally, agricultural production requires enormous water usage.

So, anytime food is wasted, the amount of water used to produce it also goes down the drain.

Knowing the problems caused by food waste, let’s see the factors that can lead to food waste.

Factors That Cause Food Waste

Food waste does not just happen; several factors contribute to it.

They include;

Excessive Buying

This can happen due to inadequate planning or consideration.

Sometimes, businesses and the food services industry fail to properly estimate the quantity of food needed before buying.

This leads to the inability to finish the food before the expiration dates or shelf-life.

Also, buying food that does not fit into regular meal plans can lead to spoilage even before it can be used. 

So, the best way to avoid over-buying is to have good meal plans and a shopping list.

This will help you have accurate estimates of what to buy and the quantity to buy as well.

Buying Almost Expired/Expired Food Items

The inability to check the expiration date of food items can lead to buying food that is already expired or close to expiration.

Sometimes businesses in the food services sector try to cut costs by buying food close to expiration.

Undoubtedly, food close to expiration has a shorter amount of time before going bad.

This may lead to food waste if not quickly used.

Overall, the best preventive measure is avoiding food with a close expiration date, especially when buying in bulk.

Preparing/Producing Food In Excess

Excess preparation of food is another factor that can lead to food waste.

Most restaurants, hotels, and homes sometimes prepare more food than they can consume.

Sometimes, they serve visitors or customers more food than they can consume, which causes leftovers.

So, the best way to handle this is to have a moderate quantity of food prepared or served.

In all, overproduction, processing, unstable markets, bad weather conditions, and poor planning also contribute to food waste in stores and homes.

Future Relevance Of Food Waste; Food Waste Business Ideas

Global food waste management showed that food waste in 2019 was around $34 billion.

More so, food waste is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.4% from 2020 to 2027.

As a result, many food businesses have experience losses.

Furthermore, many businesses are on the rise to curb the issue of food waste and make income from it.

According to ReFED study, the total profit generated from the food waste business was about $18.2 billion.

In a nutshell, leaving food waste in the trash is more like leaving money in the trash.

For this reason, there’ll always be the need to recycle food waste into useful products, creating business opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs to tap into and make profits.

More importantly, it will also help to reduce global warming.

That being said, let’s talk about the 10 food waste business ideas that can help you solve some of the problems associated with food waste.

These business ideas can also help you make cool cash depending on your area of interest.

10 Food Waste Business Ideas

1. Organic Fertilizer; Food Waste Business Ideas

This is one of the problem-solving and profitable businesses you can get involved in.

It is all about gathering food waste and turning it into organic fertilizer.

When you sell these fertilizers to farmers, you will earn money.

Aside from that, it will also save the land from degradation since no chemical is used in the manufacturing process.

To start this business, you will need a compost bin, gather your food waste, and then follow the basic principles of composition.

Finally, you might be wondering how much it will cost to start producing organic fertilizer.

But don’t worry, it is not capital-intensive, although it depends on large or little you might want to start.

Overall, turning waste food into commercial fertilizer can help you solve most of the world’s problems and help you to earn a living.

2. Food Waste Blogging

Food waste blogging is another way to make money, especially if you have a knack for writing.

Also, if you have in-depth knowledge about food waste, blogging about it can fetch you a huge amount of money.

Blogging is a business you can do from anywhere of your choice.

For instance, you can start a food waste blog to educate people on food waste and its associated problems.

Moreso, you can teach your audience how to reduce food waste by donating them to organizations that provide food for the hungry.

Blogging will earn you a lot of money depending on the quality of content on your blog post.

Good quality content will help you attract more visitors to your site.

Your success will also depend on your website’s structure/interface, SEO practice, the informational value of your content, and many others.

Aside from educating people on food waste, you can place different advertisements on your blog to earn additional income.

Also, you can earn money through affiliate marketing.

Speaking of affiliate marketing, you promote and sell other people’s products and earn a commission based on the number of sales you make.

Finally, you will need a personal laptop and a good network connection to get started.

3. Food Waste Restaurant

How does recycling food waste from restaurants sound to you?

Do you have a passion for the less privileged?

If yes, then you could also consider this business idea.

This business can be rewarding and profitable as well.

You can source food waste from restaurants and sell them to food banks and homeless shelters.

It does not only reduce food waste but also reduces food scarcity for the hungry.

Advisably, you should consider the expiry date of this food before shifting them to any organization. 

Diverting food waste to food centres helps you fulfil your social responsibilities, even as a business.

Not only that, you’ll be making a great impact on people’s lives.

Overall, you’ll support the less privileged and feed the hungry while making money. 

There are no special skills needed to start this business.

To start this business, you will need your recycling kitchen, cooking equipment, and packaging materials.

4. Sell Imperfect Foods from Grocery Stores

Another place you can start a profitable business in the food waste industry is in grocery stores and supermarkets.

Most times, grocery stores and supermarkets discard food items such as vegetables and fruits that don’t look attractive or pleasant to the eye.

That doesn’t mean that this food no longer has value or they have lost taste or nutritional value. 

It might be that these fruits and vegetables have odd shapes and unremarkable or ugly appearances. 

So, as an entrepreneur, you can source this food, repackage and sell it at a discount price.

This way, you are reducing food waste and making it available for more people to buy at a low rate.

The business isn’t capital-intensive and requires no special skill to start.

Lastly, it is a business you can run from home and make huge profits.

4. Organizing Flash Sales To Sell Off Highly Perishable Foods

If you are an entrepreneur looking for a business opportunity within this industry, Flash sales are also excellent options to explore.

You can partner with different supermarkets to run flash sales of their products while you make a living from it. 

Most organizations organize flash sales when they have goods that take time to sell or products in large quantities.

Some of the products include fruits, meats, and vegetables that would get rotten in the shortest time.

One of the easiest ways to run a flash sale is through discounts or promotions.

With flash sales, you can boost your revenue within a short period.

Also, you can sell many products at discounted prices while making profits and preventing them from spoiling.

5. Turning Food Waste Into Animal Feed

Another way you can turn food waste into a profitable business venture is by producing animal feeds.

All you need is to source food waste from the food businesses and companies and convert it into aminal feeds. 

With this, you can sell them off to farmers who use them to feed their livestock and make profits.

All you need to start this business is a basic knowledge of animal nutritional needs and animal feed processing.

Then, you’ll also need a standard amount of money to get the necessary materials and equipment.

Turning food waste into animal feed is a practical way of reducing food waste and a good opportunity to start a business.

 6. Food Waste Collection Center; Food Waste Business Ideas

Another food waste business idea is opening a food waste collection centre. 

This is a place where people can dump their food waste products.

You can charge them fees for dumping their food waste in your food waste collection centre. 

On the other hand, you can resell the food waste to other companies that may need it, such as organic fertilizers and food recycling industries.

The business does not need many requirements to get started.

All you need is sufficient space to store the food waste.

It is possible to start your business from home or open a physical office where your customers can locate you.

7. Sell Food Waste Recycling Machines

Selling food waste recycling machines is also one of the profitable business ideas in the food waste industry.

This business thrives more in areas where people are more conscious about the environment.

It is also common among those who own large gardens.

So, you can start up this business by selling machines that turn food waste into valuable materials.

It could be for fertilizer, animal feed, juice, and other recycling processes.

It’s important to note that this business can be capital-intensive depending on the type of recycling machines you are investing in.

8. Juices Production; Food Waste Business Ideas

Juice production is one of the most profitable business ideas you can start to reduce food waste.

As a fruit seller, instead of allowing your fruits and vegetables to get spoilt, you can put them together and produce unusual juices, purees, and more.

This method will prevent you from discarding fruits and vegetables while making extra income for yourself.

If you are not a fruit seller, you can buy these fruits and vegetables direct from farmers at a much-reduced cost.

More so, you can do this business from anywhere.

Depending on your financial capability, you could open a physical, online, or both.

9. Convert Banana Flakes Into Baby Food

This is a nice business opportunity for you if you are within the eastern and western parts of Africa.

Most of the countries within this continent are major banana producers.

During the banana season, most of the products are wasted because they lack the best preservative measures.

As an aspiring entrepreneur, you can buy bananas in bulk from farmers and produce baby food from them.

Aside from baby food, you could sell dry porridge mixture or banana rice from it.

Processing bananas into different foods is one of the ways you can reduce food waste and make cool cash from it.

10. Make Supplements From Fruit Peels

Do you know you can turn your fruit peels and leftover fruits into supplements?

It is one of the ways you can turn food waste into a money-making venture.

You can combine different fruit peels like watermelon rinds, carrot tops, onion skins, pineapple cores, and other related fruits to produce natural vitamins and minerals.

Also, you can advance by opening a factory where you can harness these vitamins and then sell them as supplements.

However, the business is capital-intensive.

Nevertheless, you can profit significantly from it if you produce, package, and promote your products effectively.

Conclusion On Food Wast Waste Business Ideas

Finally, you don’t have to get stuck thinking of the best food waste business ideas you can start.

We have given you the 10 best food waste business ideas you can choose from.

However, before starting any food waste business, there are certain things you should consider.

They include;

Knowledge Of Your Business Industry

Your business knowledge is one of the most important strategies you would use to excel in any business you may decide to go for.

 Your knowledge affects all the activities in and around your business.

So, it is important to understand most, if not everything, about your desired food waste business before venturing into it.

This way, you will achieve success without much stress/loss.

Consider The Costs Of Starting The Business

Whichever waste food business you decide to start, consider the cost.

Some of the cost factors to consider include the following;

  • Production costs
  • Marketing costs
  • Branding costs
  • Manpower cost
  • Operational costs, among other things.


This will also depend on the type of business you are venturing into.

Some of the businesses listed above require you to have a place where you can manufacture and sell your products.

So, you should consider having a strategic place where your business can attract a large number of customers.

Above all, the food waste business ideas in this review are all profitable in their own way.

It all depends on how you are able to run and manage them.

Also, your success will depend on the amount of effort and hard work you put into it.

Ultimately, you can only achieve the success you desire if you put action into your dreams.

So, we urge you to pick one more of the food waste business ideas featured here, get started, and give life to your entrepreneurial dream.

All the best!

To read other related articles, check out the  Food Online Business Ideas and Agro-processing Business Ideas.