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INNOCAT - eNewsletter
ISSUE #5 October 2016

Dear colleague,

We are pleased to send you the fifth and final edition of the INNOCAT e-newsletter, bringing you the latest project news and other interesting initiatives in the world of sustainable catering.

Happy reading,

Your INNOCAT team

To read more about the topics below, visit the INNOCAT website at www.sustainable-catering.eu.

If you'd like to receive more news on sustainable public procurement, sign up to the Procura+ Update.

In this issue

Project News

Market engagement: Best Practice Snapshots

Study of Turin's Carbon footprint analysis published

Update on European GPP criteria for food and catering

Have your say - What should be done about palm oil?

Project News

First purchases from INNOCAT framework contract

The first purchases have been made from a framework contract set up by INNOCAT partner Réseau des Acheteurs Hospitaliers (Resah-IDF). The contract, which offers a consulting service to manage the sorting of organic waste in hospitals, was originally launched in November 2014.

Since 2012 hospitals in France which create a certain level of waste are obliged to sort their organic waste from their “normal” waste. The organic waste has to be collected separately and must be treated differently. To address this new need for an increasing number of hospitals, Resah launched a call for tender to find a company specialised in the collection and the treatment of organic waste. A need was also identified for advice regarding the reorganisation of internal logistics in order to manage the waste separation process.

The consultancy service offers to reduce the generation and disposal of “classic” waste through favouring the separation of organic waste and so reducing waste burned; and to improve the management of organic waste in catering services in French hospitals.

For more information, visit the INNOCAT tenders page

ARPA Piemonte publishes guidelines for catering procurement

The Italian regional environmental agency for the Piedmont area ARPA Piemonte has been working with INNOCAT partner Environment Park to look at what improvements in can make to its in-house canteen. Following a detailed energy audit and needs assessment, ARPA Piemonte engaged with suppliers to see what was available on the market to help reduce waste and improve energy efficiency.

The new guidelines include minimum standards for electricity and energy consumption, minimisation of food waste and the requirement to use a life-cycle-costing approach when assessing bids. Non-single use packaging which is compatible with the needs of hygiene, contact and food storage is also requested. The contract will be monitored to ensure that bidders meet energy consumption targets while maintaining customer satisfaction levels.

For more information, download the ARPA Piemonte catering service guidelines

Turin shares new sustainable catering policy

INNOCAT partner City of Turin (Italy) shared details of its new sustainable catering policy at a national event held in the city on 18 February 2016. The event presented the project's results and new scenarios for public procurement of innovation in the catering sector, with reference to the circular economy.

The catering policy is based on an intensive study of the city’s current catering contract, which included CO2 calculations of five main product groups. The policy will be used to guide the next procurement, which is set to be launched in 2017.

Some of the recommendations from the INNOCAT-funded study have already been adopted into the current contract, such as a switch from conventional to organic pasta which – it is predicted – could lead to significant CO2 savings.

For more information, read the Turin catering policy


The University of Sheffield’s search for a low-carbon vending solution is drawing to an end, with a decision expected in November. The procurement is expected to bring significant energy savings and better functioning machines that meet the needs of the student population.

Although the new contract will deliver lower carbon and better suit the needs of the customers, the process of innovation procurement has been a learning experience for the whole project team. They are now thinking much more radically about the underlying ‘unmet need’ and whether it has to be met by a vending machine at all. For the next contract, the university is planning to take a broader perspective of their needs and challenge the market to deliver a solution which provides refreshments for the University population in a way that minimises the impact on the environment, without specifying what that solution might be.

For more information, read the case study in the INNOCAT Market Engagement Report (p.8)

Image copyright:
1. Ian Allenden, dreamstime.com, 2. Borlili, dreamstime.com
3. Piero Cruciatti, dreamstime.com, 4. Kasto80, dreamstime.com

Market Engagement: Best Practice Snapshots

There is a perception among many public procurement professionals that engaging with the market endangers transparency and introduces bias into the procurement process. However, conducted appropriately, market engagement can be delivered well within the bounds of the European Union’s Directives on Public Procurement.

Building on market engagement experiences within the project and other interesting approaches, the INNOCAT Collection of Good Practice Cases on Engaging the Market in Public Procurement seeks to assist public procurement professionals in conducting effective market engagement. They aim to increase confidence in conducting market engagement activities, and provide evidence in how effective these activities can be.

The case studies present a range of approaches, which can be used for engaging the market in different circumstances and for different purposes. Not every approach will be suitable for every procurement, and not every procurement will require market engagement. This collection shows what can be achieved when the right methodology is used in the right circumstances.

For more information, read the Market Engagement Report

Study of Turin's Carbon footprint analysis published

The majority of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with food and catering appear in the production phase, according to a study authored by the Italian academic Alessandro Cerutti from the University of Turin. The study, which formed part of the work carried out by the INNOCAT project, calculated the carbon footprint of five products purchased by the city of Turin (Italy).

The study concludes that for the products studies, the most effective area to focus on in terms of improving emissions would be production mechanisms. The production phase made up for between 60 and 70 percent of the product groups studied.

One clear recommendation rising from the study was switching away from conventional agriculture. Switching from conventional to organic or integrated production, for example, reduced GHG emissions by 66,102 tonnes CO2 equivalent for the products studied. This amounts to a 32 percent reduction in the carbon footprint of the production phase.

For more information, download the article.

Image copyright: Viorel Sima, dreamstime.com

Update: European GPP criteria for Food and Catering

Following a consultation meeting in Seville in March 2016, which was attended by members of the INNOCAT City Interest Group, a second draft of the preliminary and technical reports for the revised green public purchasing criteria on catering are expected by the end of 2016.

The European Commission's Joint Research Council, who are responsible for the criteria revision, are still looking for information on the costs of the greener criteria requirements vs. non-green criteria and sharable cases on the use of GPP criteria specifically for vending machines (e.g. coffee machines, chocolates, cookies).

For more information, listen to the GPP Helpdesk webinar on food and catering (June 2016)

Have Your Say - What should be done about palm oil?

Palm oil is a ubiquitous ingredient in many pre-packaged food products, but its production has major environmental and human rights implications. Furthermore, consumption of palm oil has been shown to have negative effects when it comes to childhood obesity and public health.

This was a hot topic of discussion at the last INNOCAT City Interest Group meeting in Seville. The best solution was seen to be an outright ban on products containing the substance, however this is very difficult to implement as it is included in so many food products. Many procurers include award criteria to reward the use of sustainable palm oil (certified by bodies such as the RSPO) - however the percentage of sustainable palm oil available on the market is low and monitoring can prove difficult.

What do you think is the best way to approach palm oil in public procurement. Share your thoughts and experiences in the Sustainable Catering Forum

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