Food waste is a pressing issue of our time. Can you believe that between 30 and 50 percent of all food production is being wasted, as we speak? The numbers are nothing short of overwhelming. In The Netherlands alone, one single person throws out on average 47kg of food per year.
But why? Well on the one hand, the appearance of our edibles has gained overstated importance over time, which makes for tons of it that does not even reach the supermarket shelves. On the other, the whole supply chain in the developed world is geared towards surplus. The natural consequence of producing too much is – you've guessed it – waste. Waste means not only the loss of valuable comestibles that could be otherwise feeding people, but also that we are using up our natural resources while at the same time taxing our environment.
Now, to make up for that depressing news, here are five initiatives in Amsterdam which you can get involved with to help fight this problem. My selection includes a restaurant, community dinners, and super-handy apps which enable you to order full meals and help you save both money and delicious food. Let's do this!
Too Good to Go - App
Too Good to Go is an app-based platform with which you can order food from your favourite restaurants in town for small prices; fresh leftover meals that would otherwise go to the bin. After your order, you can go collect the meal until 30 minutes before closing time. It's a win-win both for restaurants and consumers. Too Good to Go
Taste Before you Waste – Community Dinners / Education
This community of foodies is committed to the mission of preventing food waste. Their volunteers rescue about 250kg of food on a weekly basis, which is then turned into plant-based meals at their Wasteless Wednesday Dinners at the Dokhuis Gallery, or offered to the community on their Food Cycle Markets. All their activities are donation based, and you are welcome to get involved! Taste also puts on educational workshops and Wasteless Culture Monday Dinners, a place for “ideas in need of a stage”. Taste Before you Waste
Instock – Restaurant
Instock is a non-profit restaurant that has become a success since it opened its doors in 2014. Their cooks create meals with unsold products from supermarket chain Albert Hein and improvise with the harvest of the day. Instock has also established a Food Rescue Centre from which you can order edibles; a Food Waste School Program for primary schools, and a cookbook with flexible recipes and preserving methods to help you reproduce their mission at your own home. Instock
resQ Club – App
"Don't waste the good stuff" is resQ Club's slogan. Here's one more food-rescue app that you can make use of to get affordable quality meals with 40 to 70 percent discount, and help reduce surpluses from restaurants, cafes, hotels and bakeries in Amsterdam. resQ Club
Robin Food Kollektief – Community Dinners
Robin Food is a cool name for an activist group who fights its "peaceful war" in a vegetarian community kitchen at which you can eat every Monday and Thursday of the week. They serve three-course dinners for ten euros. Next to this they host a pay-how-you-feel Wednesday Food Waste Feast under the name Guerrilla Kitchen Amsterdam, with foods they rescue. And, by the end of it, you can even take some groceries home with you for free! Robin Food Kollektief