05 November 2020

Alumnus Pioneers Food Waste Prevention in Southeast Asia

Benjamin Lephilibert (MA, ‘05) is the founder and Managing Director of LightBlue Environmental Consulting, a startup helping organisations cut food waste and increase profitability. 

Founded in 2012, Benjamin's consulting firm supports hotel sustainability and performance in Southeast Asia, and has developed workshops and delivered training to more than 60 hotels and resorts in seven countries in the region. He started his career with Accor corporate in Asia, and was responsible for the implementation of the Green Globe environmental certification in 45 Novotel properties across nine countries in Asia. He then became a consultant for the EU (in Vietnam) and the UN (in Thailand and the Philippines) before creating his own firm.

Benjamin has been a pioneer on the topic of food waste prevention, designing and testing new solutions from a business perspective. With a consortium of academics and experts, he co-developed in 2016 The PLEDGE on Food Waste, one of the most comprehensive standards to date, which integrates a food waste monitoring system, online data tracking, behavioural change and revisions to Standard Operating Procedures at critical food waste generation points. In 2017, the PLEDGE was officially subsidised by the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (Thai government).

Reflecting on his time as a student at the Institute, he recounts his successful campaign for class representative, which was focused around “entertainment and organising parties to federate the students”. “On a more serious note”, he added, “by far the biggest takeaway from my time at the institute can be best illustrated by these couple of words: open mindedness and system thinking. This is what keeps on driving my work today”.

Benjamin graduated with a Master in International Relations and is currently the Alumni Ambassador for Thailand in Bangkok.