Have you ever think that life’s greatest injustice is when one person sleeps on a full stomach while another scours desperately for food a few feet away. Fighting Food Waste is the biggest problem we face in daily life. While this is a direct consequence of the inequality that exists between people throughout the world, the situation is made a lot worse by the huge amounts of food that goes to waste each day due to improper management and disposal of leftovers.
The world produces enough food to feed every single human being but in the same world, almost 815 million people are suffering from hunger. Food wastage is the main reason behind global hunger. It’s very unfortunate that every year, around one-third of all food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted. And alarmingly, an estimated 36 million tonnes of food is wasted in Pakistan every year.
Fighting Food Waste
This includes food loss during the supply chain (production, post-harvest handling, agro-processing, distribution and consumption) that occurs every year. In low-income countries, most food loss occurs during production, while in developed countries most food is wasted after it’s purchased.
We witness food waste during wedding ceremonies, restaurants, homes, academic institutes and almost everywhere. Before going into details, let me share my own experience with you. It’s a fact that Pakistanis are known to spend lavishly on weddings. Even those from the middle class spend their life’s savings generously on their children’s weddings.
Last week I was invited in a similar lavish wedding ceremony. After so-called wedding rituals, someone made an announcement about lunch, and I was not shocked to see the impatience for food among guests. Most people love to taste everything and in that process, they leave most of the food on their plates. After lunchtime, I sat on a chair in the corner and started thinking about the millions of people who are dying because of hunger. It is sad to see the amount of food that is wasted in such buffets as untouched food is thrown away because it was in a customer’s plate.
People should only take as much food as they can eat. If they wish to have more, they can easily take another helping, but at least excess food will not go to waste. Most restaurants even donate their excess food to NGOs that distribute the food among the underprivileged, and it is mind-boggling to see that a country that is in a crisis because of food insecurity, also wastes so much food.
This is a serious problem. We all need to stop this practice. People should make a habit of taking an adequate amount of food which they can eat without wasting any of it. There are so many people out there who barely even manage to eat one square meal a day.
Just remember one thing that throwing food away is like stealing from the table of the poor and hungry. Let’s ensure that food reaches the needy instead of a pit. Food wastage not only affects the environment but also impacts the economy as we are not only wasting food but also the resources, like energy and water that were used to prepare it.
Food insecurity, especially when caused by higher food prices, heightens the risk of democratic breakdown, civil conflict, protest, rioting, and communal conflict.
A number of options are available for tackling food waste. The government’s social welfare departments may extend their outreach activities by collecting wasted food and distributing it among the needy.\
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