Taste of waste

If eating less beef is solely for saving energy and reducing GHG emission in production–although it’s not–wasting shockingly large amount of food in the distribution is not to be overlooked, as well as the food we get expired in our refrigerators. Here’s a good video for what’s being wasted on the way to our dining tables.

Trailer from Taste the waste.com.

Luckily there already have been a few initiatives like Feeding 5K in UK and Over Datum Eetclub. Feeding 5K is pretty straight forward: run a campaign in the heart of London, cook foodstuff being wasted and feeding 5,000 people on the street, and raise awareness. It outreaches a large number of people, also the disenfranchised ones. Very nice and powerful way of communication.

Over Datum Eetclub, on the other hand, does not throw big events on the street of Amsterdam, but has a more participatory approach and seemingly longer lasting impact. They ask people to bring ‘expired’ food from their homes, cook together, and eat together. There you tend to see how different people have varied ways to cut vegetables, and the amazing potential to turn your ‘expired’ food into something joyful. Many thanks to Karljin for letting us know about this project!

What is more interesting about Over Datum Eetclub is that it’s not changing the physical beings not psychological ones. When we change our mindset, the physical constraints will become naturally and gradually overcome. Few words from Over Datum Eetclub;

Before our first Over Datum Eetclub dinner began, we went to the Albert Cuyp market to see if we could get any of the vendors to give us the left over produce that they were about to throw away at the end of a long market day. We asked the vendors at the market nicely if they would give us their left over produce. At first they were reluctant, but when we told them that we would be cooking for all our friends for free and that they were welcome to join us for dinner, they were more willing to bend the rules. Aside from the outdoor markets, food shops and grocery stores also throw away large amounts of produce and food that is about to reach its expiry date.

There are many questions in place around food laws. Why is it illegal to take food from the trash? Why is it not socially tolerated? Why are the dumpsters around the city locked? Is food a public right? Is garbage public or private property? These questions and issues will be addressed in upcoming articles in connection with our Over Datum Eetclub dinners.

… And an inspiring interview of Margarita Osipian and Ashiq in the Mediamatic Verhalenkast.

So, here is our reality, and food waste isn’t something we want to pay for, but it seems that we all are. So is the illnesses we get from excessive beef intake, or the environmental consequences none of us will succeed to get away with. Over Datum Eetclub is a recurring event, so if you live in Amsterdam, you should knock the door of Mediamatic!