Nearly two-thirds of holidaymakers think hotel buffet restaurants waste food and four out of five agree they should do more to avoid food waste, according to research on behalf of Tui.
The study among UK customers by polling giant YouGov found almost nine out of 10 holidaymakers (86%) enjoy trying local food on holiday.
But 63% agreed hotel buffet restaurants “create unnecessary food waste” and 79% that they “should do more to avoid wasting food”.
Tui has made cutting food waste a priority, not just in its own hotels and on cruise ships but industry-wide.
A trial involving Tui Cruises and German-based sustainable food organisation United Against Waste achieved a 17% reduction in waste.
That initiative has been extended across Tui Cruises, with UK brand Marella Cruises looking at how to follow it, and Tui has developed guidelines for the rest of the cruise sector and for hotels.
The research also found a 10-point rise to 71% in the proportion of holidaymakers prepared to make lifestyle changes “to benefit the environment” compared with a similar survey two years ago.
The latest study, by YouGov, suggested one in two holidaymakers (51%) would book a “more environmentally sustainable holiday” if readily available – on a par with two years ago*.
Tui Group sustainability director Jane Ashton said: “There has been a significant shift tied to lifestyle changes. You see it in supermarkets and farmers’ markets – the desire to keep things local and reduce food miles.
“People want to experience local food and local culture on holiday and be involved with local people.”
Efforts to source food locally meant that 79% of food served at Tui Hotels and Resorts’ 300-plus properties last year was sourced in the destination country and almost half (47%) from the local region**.
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov. Total sample size was 2,093 adults, of whom 1,273 were aged 18-80 and had flown for a holiday in the last two years (holidaymakers). Fieldwork was undertaken on August 13-14, 2019.
The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).
*Research for Tui Group in 2017, UK consumers. See full results: http://www.tui-sustainability.com
** Data gathered from approximately 300 Tui Hotels for the 2018 financial year (1 October 2017 – 30 September 2018)