Journal of Resources and Ecology ›› 2021, Vol. 12 ›› Issue (5): 628-635.DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2021.05.006

• Resource Economy • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Sustainable Development of the Catering Industry in China: Policy and Food Waste

CAO Xiaochang1,2(), ZHANG Feng3, CHENG Shengkui1, LIU Xiaojie1,*()   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    3. School of Management Engineering, Shandong Jianzhu University, Jinan 250101, China
  • Received:2020-08-20 Accepted:2021-02-25 Online:2021-09-30 Published:2021-11-30
  • Contact: LIU Xiaojie
  • About author:CAO Xiaochang, E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    The National Natural Science Foundation of China(71874178)


The catering industry is an important industry related to the growth of the national economy and the needs of daily life. After 2012, the central government has successively introduced and implemented a series of policies to limit the official consumption and catering waste. These policies have had a huge impact on China's catering industry, especially the development of high-end catering. Based on expert scoring and interviews with government managers, the catering industry organizations, catering enterprises, researchers and consumers, this paper studies the impacts of the policies before and after 2012 on the sustainable development of the catering industry. The results show that: (1) Policies after 2012 have been very strong in their strength and duration, and this can ensure that the policies can effectively perform their restraint and management functions in the long term. (2) As affected by policies after 2012, the frequency and amounts of public expenditures in China have dropped significantly, and mass consumption is developing faster. (3) The impact of policies on income is quite controversial. On the whole, the policies have continued to promote the increasing of catering income after 2012, and have played a significant role in optimizing the catering structure and reducing food waste. However, the policies have had little effect on the improvement of industry standards and environmental protection. (4) The sustainable development of the catering industry requires the efforts of the government, industry organizations, restaurants and consumers. Steady income growth, a reasonable and healthy industry structure, sound industry standards, and low food waste are important standards and goals for the sustainable development of the catering industry.

Key words: sustainable development, catering industry, policy, food consumption, food waste