An island with endless food supply generously donated from everyone over the world. We are proud to say that we are also standing right behind US and China in World Rankings – for our greenhouse gas emissions! (8% of annual greenhouse gas emissions) Obviously this is not an actual place, thankfully, but this is what food waste will be as a country.
As part of a campaign called Food Unfiltered carried out by students from Nanyang Technological University’s (NTU) the students conducted a survey of 243 Singaporeans with ages from 20 to 59 in a year. Results from the survey revealed 68.1% of respondents refused to buy ugly food—items that are defined as “edible fresh fruits and vegetables with slight discoloration, bruising or misshapenness.”
In this place we call home, it is a pity that many of us are unable to look past the bruises and deficiencies – in our food. And because of this, we find ourselves being a lethal culprit of climate change.
That decent looking guy you see on tinder has a 100/100 personality too!
No doubt, food waste is a gargantuan problem to tackle initially but first, we need to understand why 800,000 tonnes of food are wasted a year, (aside from the supposed 2 bowls of rice worth per pax thrown away from the consumer end), the numbers just does not seem to add up. This problem can be analysed in 2 parts;
Looking at developing nations, as much as consumers value food, they are less equipped with the technologies to deal with wastage especially in the manufacturing processes.
On the other hand, in developed nations like our sunny island, consumers tend to waste food due to the sheer abundance of supply and disconnection from the source of the supplies.
What can we do then? (in Singapore)
Start from your own kitchen.
The next time you visit a supermarket, grab an apple, when your eye catches sight of a redder looking apple, remind yourself that the shape, size, colour does not matter, then place the apple into your basket. Perhaps only when we start consciously making such decisions will we change the way we view our food.
Innately as human beings, the norm we know today is constructed from memories we have as a child. A quick look at this article on ‘How Do Toys Affect A Child’s Self-Image, View of Society?’ https://wdet.org/posts/2017/05/22/85212-how-do-toys-affect-a-childs-self-image-view-of-society/,
“Everything they interact with teaches them what the world is like…And we know that if things are familiar, we’re more comfortable with them” – Christia Spears Brown, Ph.D. psychologist.
If you have kids, or younger cousins for that matter, consider changing up the toys in their little playpen. As we slowly shed light onto the importance of toys in educating our young, we can teach them to accept that misshapen, imperfect food is perfectly fine.
Even if you do not have a follower count of thousands on instagram, by posting a picture of your bruised food product and then with the power of some captions,
#uglybutgood #isupportuglyfood #FightFoodWaste #uglyfruitisbeautiful #eatugly
our friends will be exposed to seeing more of these imperfect produces. As we register more of such images, our brains can normalise the idea of having less-than-perfect products in our baskets. Another great idea can be to organise cooking sessions with your friends, as you bond over the old times and good food, you can introduce them to your food pantry. Then the next step would be to have faith that your friends will join you in your quest to support ugly foods too!
4. Change the way you get your food! (for businesses)
If you have an FnB business and would like to do your part in reducing food wastage, do sign up for our phone application. Here, you can make orders and bid for your orders at heavily discounted rates. Most importantly, these food stocks are part of TreeDots which come from oversupply, off-spec and close to expiry products and would have been completely wasted if not for YOU.
Our new app is operationally ready on both
Download now and get access to a whole bunch of fresh ingredients, the sustainable way. Alternatively, contact us HERE for more details!
“LOVE FOOD, FIGHT WASTE” always.