Thursday, December 10, 2009
Group calls on conference to put food waste on menu
by Matt Whitby
ABOUT 10 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions are created by producing food that no one eats, a food awareness group said at COP15 yesterday.
The founder of a group dedicated to raising awareness about food waste in Denmark says she is disappointed the topic is not on the agenda for politicians during the conference.
Graphic artist Selina Juul, who established the non-profit organisation Stop Spid Af Mad (Stop wasting food), says that the amount of food each Dane throws out each year costs around $1400.
“Food waste is very large problem in Denmark at the moment,” she says. “Every year the average Dane throws away 63 kilograms of good edible food away.”
Ms Juul says she is concerned the issue is not being discussed at COP15.
Stop Spild Af Mad has more than 3700 members, including politicians and leading Danish chefs.
Danish chef Bo Jakobsen works at Restaurationen, a downtown restaurant in Copenhagen.
Although not a member of Stop Spild Af Mad, he has strong opinions about food waste. He says the amount of food thrown away in the world is ‘morally disgusting’.
“Fifty percent of the food we produce in the world gets wasted,” he says.
“With millions of people around the world starving it’s just ridiculous.”
Ms Juul says preventing food waste is very easy and something everyone can do something about.
“It is a very simple problem which we all could contribute to fixing,” she says. “We don’t have to donate any money.
“The only thing we have to do is change our mindset, to only use the amount of food that we need, instead of just throwing the food away.”
Ms Juul says she wanted to see political decisions made to reduce the amount of waste.
“Things like building a network of donating good and fresh leftover food from companies, canteens and restaurants to homeless people,” she says.