A £100,000 investment in the kitchens at the Royal United Hospital in Bath has seen the hospital slash its energy and water use while reducing food waste.
The latest in cooking technology has seen five new cookers replace the seven old, outdated boiling pans.
The new computer-controlled Vario Cooking Centres (VCCs) are electronically-driven and have individual heating squares which only heat the areas of the cooker that are needed, keeping energy use down.
Chefs are also able to programme the cookers for each meal they are making, so that the temperature stays consistent for each dish.
Food is now cooked quicker and with perfect timing, so there is less waste.
As a result, the RUH is now buying 10% less meat each year, without reducing the amount of meat used in its dishes.
Head of Facilities Philip Watson said: “What used to take two hours to cook can now be ready in 45mins as the new cookers are so much more energy-efficient.
“They also make it easier to cook meat, so there is less chance of our meat dishes being overcooked and having to be thrown away.
“We are also using a lot less water. The new cookers allow you to programme how much water is needed for each meal and they will provide the exact amount. They’re also easier to clean.
“The old boiling pans took around 200 litres of water to wash, but the new cookers need only 10 litres, so that’s a massive reduction.”
The kitchen chefs use the cookers to create around 45,000 patient meals each month and there has been positive feedback from patients about the food.
Philip said: “The RUH is committed to being a sustainable organisation and we are always looking at ways to reduce waste and use less energy.
“This investment in our kitchens has made them more environmentally-friendly and reduced costs too, while hopefully providing our patients with even better quality, tastier food.”