Singapore may be food haven, but on the flip side, food waste in Singapore accounts for 10% of its total waste generated, and in the past 10 years, food waste in Singapore has increased by almost 50%.
Did you know that the National Environment Agency (NEA) has a food waste management to deal with food waste?
The Food Waste Management Plan Strategies is made up of 4 strategies.
- Prevent and reduce food waste at source
- Redistribute unsold / excess food
- Recycle food waste
- Recovery of Energy
Of the 4 strategies, the easiest to implement is probably the first: Prevent and reduce food waste at source. Yet, it could also be the hardest to implement as it involves the changing of mindset.
According to an industry expert, Food and Beverage (F&B) outlet operators feel the effort to reduce food waste is not directly to their performance or productivity.
Perhaps it’s because it requires a bit more time and effort to sort what can be recycled or not, that deters F&B outlet operators from reducing their food waste output.
But if more planning can go into what ingredients to purchase and how much to purchase, then not only do these F&B operators save costs, but also reduce the chance of food wastage.
But what happens if food has been prepared and not consumed?
The NEA’s second strategy to manage food waste is to redistribute unsold / excess food.
Some years back, bakeries were in the news for dumping unsold bread at the end of every day.
Multiple thrash bags full of unsold bread and pastries were dumped at the bakeries. These raised the ire of Singaporeans who felt that the move was wasteful.
A few organisations soon sprouted up and began collecting unsold bread from bakeries and hotels to distribute to welfare organisations, needy families and individuals.
These days, there are also technology and equipment to turn food waste in to more eco-friendly fertiliser and non-potable water. This minimises the amount of waste to be incinerated and eventually the amount of ash sent to Semakau Landfill.
Yes, we are a “foodie nation”, where all of us are proud of our culinary heritage. But much more can be done to reduce food wastage, through better management and planning.
- Proud to be a Singaporean...although I have always wished that our temperature can be 3-5 degrees lower!!! ^^
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