The Holy month of Ramadan starts in just a couple of weeks, and whether you partake in fasting or not, this month is always a reminder of the food crisis that millions of people across the world suffer from. Hunger has become the new norm for some people around the world.

This Ramadan we want to encourage you to make sure you do not waste any food, although we know it could be a challenge with all the generous family & friends iftars!. Check out our green guide below for easy-to-follow tips on avoiding food wastage and making sure any extras go to those in need. 

A photo of a man in Yemen feeding his four children from one small plate amidst the famine crisis going on there since 2018. 

Food waste is a significant issue that we must divert our attention to due to a vast array of reasons. First of all, even though less harmful than non-perishables such as plastic, food waste increases the global crisis of climate change due to all the energy and water that goes into harvesting, growing, transporting, and packaging food. Hence, when we waste food, we are wasting all this, and if this food is discarded incorrectly, it goes to landfills and rots. This wasteful process produces methane, which is a greenhouse gas that is worse than carbon dioxide. 

Then comes the harm done to human life. Between the 1860s up until 2016, it is estimated that 128 million people died from famines. This does not take into account the more recent and severe developments in places like Yemen, Sudan & Ethiopia. Even though it is argued that the risk of famine has been extremely reduced due to advances in food production technology and globalization, there are still around 80 million people living in a state described as "crisis-level" by the IPC (Integrated Food Security Phase Classification). These people living under crisis, if their lives are saved in one way or another, their health and immunity are severely damaged due to significant exposure to malnourishment. 

With all this damage known, it is infuriating to know that around 1.3 billion tons of edible food, which is equivalent to a third of the world's production, is wasted annually. This is enough to feed 3 billion people and end world hunger. It would also significantly reduce the environmental effect that was mentioned earlier, and help in curbing climate change. 

Check out our recommendations section below for interesting sources that cover this topic.

1. Make sure to not order more than you can eat in restaurants, since most restaurants will take that leftover food and throw it away.
2. When purchasing perishable items such as fresh fruits and vegetables, make sure to buy them in small quantities so you don't have to throw any of them away because they went bad.
3. Check your fridge and freezer frequently for items that you won't eat or will expire soon, and make sure to donate them instead of throwing them away later. 
Thursday, April 22nd marks the 51st Anniversary of Earth Day. Earth Day is an annual event celebrated around the world to demonstrate support for environmental protection. In 1970, a Wisconsin senator started Earth Day to encourage people to hold grassroots environmental issues on the United States political agenda. In 1990, Earth Day became a global event, celebrated by 140 nations across the world. Involvement in Earth Day has grown immensely over the past 50 years, with over 1 billion people participating in Earth Day activities. 
1. Ted-Talk:
Tristram Stuart: The global food waste scandal

Understanding the hazards of unnoticed privilege is crucial and especially when it comes to food waste. This talk highlights the discrepancies in action between some western societies and the countries in the global south fighting famine, and overall calls for a more responsible use of global resources.
Watch it here:

2. Short Video: 
Food waste is the world's dumbest problem

This short video led by scientists highlights the privilege of food, that most people tend to abuse without a second thought, once again highlighting the inequality gaps we have in our world. The video also discusses the environmental aspect of food waste, and how it contributed to climate change.
Watch it here:

3. Documentary:
Inside the World's Worst Humanitarian Crisis

This documentary explain the politics behind the famine going on in Yemen, due to an ongoing civil and external war, and highlighting the urgency of this, with the window to stop famine in Yemen quickly closing up. 
Watch it here: 


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