Hans Dairy - Food Loss + Waste

By Provision Coalition

By participating in Provision Coalition’s Onsite Sustainability Management System (SMS) Support Program, Hans Dairy realized the opportunity to save resources and costs by reducing food loss + waste in their operations. Like many companies, their internal staff was at capacity with running the business, so they so they recognized the need to seek outside opinions to find expert solutions.

That’s why Hans Dairy partnered with Provision Coalition and Enviro-Stewards to conduct a food loss + waste assessment in their facility using Provision’s online Food Loss + Waste (FLW) Toolkit.

The FLW Toolkit1, part of Provision’s online Sustainability Management System, is the only online resource available at no cost to food and beverage manufacturers. The toolkit assists in quantifying food waste, calculating its economic, social, and environmental value, and conducting a root cause analysis to develop cost effective FLW reduction strategies. The assessment and application of the toolkit found two opportunities for food loss + waste reduction at Hans Dairy.


Key Findings 

  • A potential reduction of 67,500L of raw milk food savings annually
  • $71,719 in potential resource savings annually, which includes the embedded environmental reductions
  • Potential annual environmental and social savings of 820 kWh of electricity, 65 m3 of natural gas, 50 tonnes of CO2e GHG emissions 2,75 m3 of water and 5,166 meals


Food Loss + Waste Assessment Process

Following the methods used in the FLW Toolkit, the food waste assessment began with an evaluation of the entire processing facility from milk receiving to final product packaging. The quantity and value of food waste was then determined for each of the production processes followed by a “5 Why” approach to identify root causes of each waste. Possible solutions for each food waste stream were considered, and an implementation plan was developed for selected measures. The business case for each solution was then presented to Hans Dairy.


Food Loss + Waste Opportunities 

The utilization of Provision’s FLW Toolkit while completing the food waste prevention assessment identified 90,000 L of raw milk annually, which is currently being discharged to sanitary sewers or classified as degraded value. Implementing the recommended opportunities would result in the prevention of 67,500 L of raw milk wasted annually. In addition to saving the raw ingredient costs,
addressing these issues would reduce the amount of BOD sewage charge fees, improve product quality control, health & safety and reduce embedded natural gas, electrical and water costs.

Opportunity 1 | $59,766

Transfer Line Recovery 

In order to clean the piping systems and maintain quality, some of the pasteurized milk used to create yogurts, smoothies, and puddings is currently being pushed to the drain with water. Capturing the line transfer flushes and sending them to a holding tank to use as a smoothie
ingredient would result in annual milk savings of 56,250 L, totaling $59,766, with a payback of 3.5 months. This would also result in a savings of 820 kWh of electricity, 33 tonnes of CO2e of GHG, 74 m3 of water, 65 m3 of natural gas and 3,370 meals.

Opportunity 2 | $11,953

Truck Unloading Recovery

Raw milk is piped from delivery trucks into raw milk silos. After the transfer is complete, any product remaining in the transfer line is drained to the floor. Recovering raw milk from the transfer line through
draining it directly into the raw milk silo or into a separate tote and then adding it to the raw silo storage would result in an annual savings of 11,250 L of raw milk, representing 1,796 meals. The savings are valued at $11,953 with a payback of 2.5 years. The GHG savings are 17 tonnes of CO2e from raw materials, and all others are null because the raw milk has not yet been processed.



"“We didn’t know what we were getting into until we got into it. We learned how to recoup what goes down the drain, and the recommendations put forward from the initiative were beneficial for reducing contamination and loss. The process of the assessment asked questions you never would ask yourself, because you’re too busy working. The right questions helped narrow it down, focus our vision and explain it to the rest of the family.” - Katen Kohli, Manufacturing Engineering, Hans Dairy 


Environmental & Social Resource Conservation Opportunities 

  • Electricity saved from switching 20.4 incandescent lamps to LEDs
  • Emissions from two passenger vehicles driving across Canada
  • Water to fill 469 bathtubs
  • 5,166 wasted meals (based on 750 calories per meal)

Download Case Study / PDF EN | FR


Canada’s Food Waste Problem
In Canada, 43% of avoidable food waste occurs in processing and manufacturing, presenting enormous opportunity for manufacturers to take action to positively impact the environment—and their bottom line. Avoidable waste costs approximately $49.5 billion each year, reduces the supply of food available to eat and contributes to climate change through methane emissions in landfill.


Funding for this project has been provided by:

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Tags: Food Loss + Waste, Dairy

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