More sustainable food for public canteens

May 28, 2013

Contributor: Lyon

Governance, synergies and local systems /  Canteens 

17M€ invested by the City of Lyon to build a new central kitchen providing the public canteens. This eco-building will allow cooking fresh vegetables and adding more local products and organic products to children’s meals.

Every year, the city of Lyon is providing 3M meals for the 125 school canteens. About 65% of the children from 2 to 11 years old have lunch at school (public only). The actual central kitchen is outdated, so the City decided to build a new one including a global sustainable approach: eco-conception, resource efficiency use and production of more sustainable food.

This tool will complete a global action led toward children to reduce waste and to promote organic and seasonal food.

Starting from September 2014, the new central kitchen will be able to produce up to 35K meals per day with:

– 30 to 32% of organic products

– 2 meals, one without meat to respect religious rules and lower CO2 footprint

– 1 dish with fresh vegetable (starter or main course)

– Local and seasonal products according on the CO2 footprint of the production per meal


This investment won’t impact the average cost per meal, about 3.60€ for the citizens and about 10€ for the city (including staff).

The HEQ building of 5000m² will also include new technology for further improvements such as plugs for electrical trucks. The municipal department in charge is also planning to control the resource efficiency and fix rules for the use of the central kitchen such as: 4 L of water and 0,5 KW/h maximum per meal.


Logistics and delivering:

– 15km between the kitchen en the city center : traffic jam, size of trucks

– adapted access to school buildings : “cold chain”, delivery by night


Rules for public buying:

Local products, IGP,…