Accor, a global hospitality leader, deploys AI and Gaïa reporting tool to reduce food waste


  • Accor, a global hospitality leader, employs AI and Gaïa reporting tool to combat food waste.
  • 71% of Accor’s hotels adopt Gaïa, with plans for universal implementation by 2025.
  • Accor collaborates with the IFWC to establish food waste measurement standards.
  • Partnerships with AI startups like Winnow, Orbisk, and Fullsoon optimize food management.
  • Iberostar Hotels reduces 11% of food waste with Winnow technology and eyes carbon neutrality by 2030.
  • Lumitics’ smart waste tracker utilizes AI to cut food waste in buffets.
  • Buffets gain efficiency through self-service, catering to time-pressed business travelers.

Main AI News:

In the ever-evolving landscape of the hospitality industry, global hotel leaders are embracing cutting-edge artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to tackle a pressing concern: food waste. Among these industry frontrunners, Accor, boasting a network of 5,500 hotels and 10,000 food and beverage venues catering to a staggering 200 million meals annually, recognizes the pivotal role of precision in the fight against food waste.

Accor’s innovative approach hinges on a collaborative effort, combining AI with a meticulous measurement drive. The key to their success lies in Gaïa, an exclusive online reporting tool tailored for Accor hotels. Gaïa empowers these establishments to quantify their food waste with unparalleled accuracy and adhere to standardized measurement protocols. But its capabilities don’t stop there; this technology-based solution extends its scope to encompass the tracking of energy, water, waste, and carbon footprint performance, offering hotels a comprehensive overview of their sustainability endeavors.

Remarkably, Gaïa has already gained traction, with 71% of Accor’s affiliate, managed, and franchised hotels already adopting this transformative platform. Accor’s ambitions don’t end here; their vision entails rolling out Gaïa to all hotels with catering operations by 2025.

Accor is not merely content with in-house initiatives; they’ve also taken their commitment to reducing food waste to a global stage by actively participating in the International Food Waste Coalition (IFWC). Within this coalition, Accor is actively contributing to shaping a standardized methodology for food waste measurement and the establishment of best practices in the commercial and contract catering sectors. With a focus on scientific rigor, Accor aims to surpass its targeted 50% reduction in food waste by 2030.

To expedite its transformation and curb waste at its source, Accor has forged partnerships with three AI-powered startups. Winnow, a trailblazer in food waste reduction, deploys visual recognition technology to identify surplus food items, offering precise data that empowers teams to optimize menus and minimize waste. Currently operational in approximately 100 properties, Winnow has already yielded substantial reductions in waste.

Meanwhile, Orbisk, an AI-based startup, secured the Accor Challenge at Viva Technology 2021 by using AI to scan leftover food, enabling the fine-tuning of menus and further waste reduction. Adding to the arsenal is Fullsoon, a predictive management solution designed for restaurants. Accor is set to implement Fullsoon in 10 pilot locations by the end of 2023, with the goal of enhancing food and beverage margins while minimizing waste.

In their quest to instigate change, Accor is also committed to altering habits and raising awareness among both employees and customers. Customized training modules for kitchen teams address the issue of food waste, while active engagement with customers promotes responsible dining practices. Accor takes it a step further by selling uneaten food at reduced prices or donating it through a partnership with Too Good to Go, resulting in substantial reductions in CO2 emissions and food waste.

But Accor isn’t the only hotel giant making strides in this arena. Iberostar Hotels, a notable player in the industry, has incorporated Winnow technology into 48 of its global locations. This move is a significant milestone in their mission to achieve a waste-free future by 2025 and attain carbon neutrality by 2030. Since January, Iberostar has witnessed a reduction of 735,000 meals in food waste, equating to an 11% decrease in waste weight and the saving of 1,264 tons of CO2. Artificial intelligence is the linchpin behind this remarkable achievement.

Iberostar’s Winnow systems offer precise insights into discarded food items, enabling informed decisions based on real-time data. Kitchen staff, trained to efficiently use this tool, identify discarded food via tablets, while a sophisticated camera catalogs up to 600 food items. A scale measures weight and promptly sends pertinent information to chefs, including cost, weight, and quantity of discarded food. This data is then uploaded to the cloud for comprehensive analysis, culminating in daily, weekly, and monthly reports that empower Iberostar kitchens to enhance their production processes, thus saving money and reducing their environmental footprint.

The integration of AI technology in their kitchens not only contributes to waste reduction but also enhances the customer experience and service quality. By streamlining kitchen operations, prioritizing eco-friendly materials, and exploring innovative cooking techniques, Iberostar aims to set a new standard for excellence in the industry.

Sabina Fluxá, Vice-Chairman & CEO of Iberostar Group, succinctly articulates the significance of these endeavors, stating, “Reducing food waste is key to meeting our 2030 Agenda goals. The value of food cannot be underestimated, and at Iberostar, we want to ensure it is not wasted. In addition to training our employees to address food waste, we have put in place this innovative system to reduce the amount of waste we produce without affecting the guest experience. We are convinced the use of state-of-the-art technology, training, and innovation dedicated to removing food waste will help us reduce climate impacts, achieve our goals, and contribute to broader global goals that benefit the planet.”

The hospitality industry’s buffet lines, historically a major contributor to food waste, are also undergoing a transformation. Lumitics, a Singapore-based startup supported by venture capital firm Velocity Ventures, has introduced a game-changing solution: the smart waste tracker. Leveraging AI, sensors, and computer vision, this innovative technology effectively tracks and identifies food waste.

The data collected by the smart waste tracker is meticulously processed and presented in easy-to-understand tables. These tables offer valuable insights, such as opportunities to reduce portion sizes and identify unpopular dishes for replacement. This technology is not confined to hotels alone; it extends to buffets on cruise ships and airlines, facilitating precise catering that aligns with environmental goals.

In addition to its waste-reducing capabilities, buffets that allow guests to serve themselves instantly prove to be a boon for business travelers with time constraints.


The integration of AI and innovative technology in the hospitality industry not only reduces food waste but also enhances operational efficiency and sustainability. This strategic shift towards precise food waste measurement and management reflects a commitment to environmental responsibility and improved customer experiences, positioning these hotel giants at the forefront of a market increasingly focused on sustainability and waste reduction.