NEC Group introduces carbon labelling trial at NEC and ICC venues

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NEC Group introduces carbon labelling trial at NEC and ICC venues

UK-based NEC Group is taking the next step on its sustainability journey by trialling carbon labelling at its NEC and ICC venues, led by in-house caterer Amadeus.

Introduced with the help of food technology and sustainability specialists Foodsteps, the trial is assessing the carbon impacts of 1,800 recipes sold at the venues by labelling dishes on its menus as low carbon footprint.

The project comes in collaboration with a study conducted by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), which funded the project, and the University of Birmingham (UOB) on food sustainability labelling and behaviour change.

Developed alongside scientists and academics at the University of Cambridge, Foodsteps provides a cloud-based platform, as well as labelling capability and QR codes.

On the platform, food providers upload recipes and view the sustainability impact of each ingredient. It can be used to monitor targets, develop new recipes, and improve a menu or product’s sustainability.

The NEC venue is using its digital screens to direct customers towards this sustainability information, allowing eventgoers to easily check the impact of each dish. The new labels will feature in the caterer’s Edge restaurants at the NEC.

Ian Taylor, managing director for Conventions and Exhibitions at NEC Group, said: “We have a strong focus on sustainability.”

“We know from customer feedback that our visitors love the quality of food and service at both venues, so we’re excited that our carbon labels will help them make low carbon choices and reduce their carbon footprint.”

Marc Frankl, food and beverage director for NEC Group caterer Amadeus, said: “Innovation is front and centre in our work across the live events industry. We’ve been looking at carbon labelling for a while, but it is something we were able to implement quicker thanks to the input of WMCA.”

“We’re constantly looking at ways to review and improve our sustainability methods and it’s something we’d love to roll out across our wider venue portfolio.”

Andy Street, mayor of the West Midlands, said: “Given the collective efforts underway in our region to tackle the climate emergency and to achieve our #WM2041 net-zero goal, I’m pleased to learn that caterers are taking the step to carbon label their menus to help spectators make informed decisions when choosing what to eat.”

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