Food waste restaurants go global
In a continuation of the movement to combat food waste, international restaurants are hopping on the trend of serving landfill-bound fare at an accessible price point. In a world where 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted annually, leveraging items that would have ended up in the trash is not only better for the environment but can also aid those who go hungry each day because they can’t afford a fresh meal.
Instock, an Amsterdam-based restaurant launched by former coworkers at Dutch supermarket Albert Heijn, joined forces with the grocery chain to put would-be waste to work. At the end of the day, any ingredients doomed for the trash are taken from the store’s shelves and given to the chefs to create custom dishes for lunch and dinner. Making use of this perfectly edible food keeps anything that isn’t donated from becoming part of the 10% of food that supermarkets would normally waste. In addition, because the chefs never know what they’re going to get, the menu changes daily, keeping diners engaged.
TOO GOOD TO GO
Newly released British app Too Good To Go enables users to buy leftovers from local restaurants, bakeries, and cafés at a discounted price an hour before closing time. Eateries and consumers alike are eager to utilize the app’s functions; restaurants and chefs make money off of food they would have had to discard, and thrifty foodies are able to enjoy a fresh, and sometimes gourmet, dinner. Too Good To Go also helps to keep the carbon footprint of participating restaurants in check, as they provide them with to-go containers made of biodegradable sugarcane material rather than less earth-friendly plastic or Styrofoam packaging.
Every elegant dish at NYC pop-up restaurant wastED, launched by chef and farm-to-table advocate Dan Barber and fueled by a community of international chefs and culinary partners, took root in the overlooked byproducts of the food system, drawing ingredients from farmers, fishermen, distributors, processors, plant breeders, producers, restaurants and retailers. Diners were given a glossary of sorts to guide them on how their dish (which cost just $15) was sourced, cooked, served, and what would have happened to it if it had been discarded. Though the pop-up has ended, wastED’s mission to educate the public on food waste continues via its news blog.