‘Waste on the plate: Reimagining Food waste’ – John Feeney and Joke Putseys (Custom Culinary®) – FMS22

Don’t waste the richness of food waste

The lecture of Joke Putseys and John Feeney from Custom Culinary® consisted of four parts: introduction, tasting, additional information and a challenge. The company’s mission is to combat food waste, which nowadays is enormous. At the beginning of the presentation, we heard terrifying information: 1/3 of the food produced in the world is wasted. This is very sad data. Joke showed us the differences between terms such as “food waste” and “food loss”. “Food loss most often occurs at the production, post-harvest, and processing stages of the food chain. Whilst food waste occurs at the end of the food chain. Food waste is the food which was originally produced for human consumption but then was discarded or was not consumed by humans.” However, this is not the only information that saddens us. About 50% of food in households is wasted. So it depends on us – the consumers. 40% of wasted food is fruit and vegetables. Another problem is that we only use a small fraction of plants for consumption. The rest is thrown away. Food is not properly distributed on our planet. There are countries that are very rich in food and those that are very poor.

Custom Culinary® focused on these issues during the presentation. John decided to give a second life to green bananas, cabbage leaves, carrot and orange peel on stage. He created interesting snacks out of them and invited a person from the audience to try them. According to the reviews, everything turned out to be very tasty. Green bananas are a source of iron, potassium and magnesium. Cabbage leaves contain potassium and calcium. These are essential micronutrients.
Joke encouraged us to focus on several issues:

  • What are we buying? From whom, and are they sustainable sources?
  • What are we cooking? To what extent is our kitchen plant-based?
  • What do we serve our families and friends?

Everyone should answer these questions. Many interesting statements were made during the lecture, but the one that should absolutely be remembered is: “Respecting food is respecting life.” Joke and John repeated many times that the field of reducing food waste is new and we still know little about it. It is important to talk about it so that people start to think about it on a daily basis. Custom Culinary® proposes to prepare sauces and spices from many previously unused plant parts. This idea is amazing! At the end of the lecture, there was a challenge. Type #wasteontheplate on Instagram and see for yourself. Will you take part in the challenge?

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