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Issues of Food Waste

Updated October 13, 2020
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Issues of Food Waste essay

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Food is very essential to human being as it could give us energy to carry out our daily life. Without food, human will be hunger and it will tend to decrease their productivity when working or having an activity. Thus, it can be highlighted that foods play an important role for our survivor and to sustain our live in the future but in a meantime, people nowadays tend to waste their food which has generated into waste. According to Chen et al (2017), organic waste came through several places where commonly found in the restaurant, kitchens especially from domestic or commercial and last in the Cafeterias. There is also other term that often been used such as the kitchen waste, biowaste and food loss (Thyberg & Tonjes, 2016).

Food waste has become one of the issues in the world that most people still searching for its solution. According to FAO (2015), about 1.3 billion tonnes per year that equivalent to one-third of food produced for human consumption that was generated in the world turn into waste. Initial production is the major contributor of food waste throughout the supply chain and it end up in the final of the household consumption. Household in Malaysia has been estimated that about 0.5-0.8kg of uneaten food in a day has been reported (Chien Bong et al., 2016). This issue was estimated will be increase per year due to population growth, economic development and last but not least the urbanization. By the year 2020, Malaysia was expected to reach around 33.4 million and in the year 2030 is about 37.4 million.

In addition, the waste that people generated especially the food have influence the availability food to others. If one third of the world produced food and has wasted, conversely there are about 868 million people who are still living in starvation and insufficient malnutrition life. According to Thi, Lin & Kumar (2016), the food waste is an ethical problem and it is not only come from social, economic and environmental but it need all people to stay alert and taken the issues seriously. Therefore, the result of reducing food waste has gain attention especially the international, regional and national levels (Liu et al., 2016). There are several parties which seriously taken this issues on how to overcome it such as governments, research institutions, producers, distributors, retailers and consumers.

According to Lambin & Meyfroidt (2011), a country that is rich and big tend to demand more food and food co-products, with this it lead to environmental problems such as population growth contributes to GHG emissions through its effect on deforestation as land is grabbed for enhancing food production. Hoornweg et al. (2013) view that when there is surplus of supply and number of population will lead them in generating more waste two times than before. To support it, food waste and food co-products waste created a huge environmental, economic and social problem (Mourad, 2016). Monetary loss is one of the effects of food waste and for the second effect is the increasing price in food due to social impact (Graham-Rowe et al., 2014; Stuart, 2009). The third effect is the quality level of natural resources will be influence and as the result are the greenhouse gasses (FAO, 2013 and 2014; WRAP, 2011).

There are million people around the world are still searching and struggling to find enough food for them to eat but in a mean time, there are also millions of food is wasted every year. It has become a big issue especially in developed countries as it will result in a serious economic and environmental issue. This can be proven when they found out that there is 60 million metric tons of food is wasted every year in the United States (New York Times, 2015). Other study found out that the largest solid waste is the food waste found especially in the US landfills (Chrobog, 2014). In other part of the world, it is around 280-300 kg per capita per year of food waste that was found in Europe and North America (Garrone, Melacini & Perego, 2014). In Southeast Asia, it is about 33% that was found wasted in that region (Yang et al., 2016).

Generally, the food waste sources can be differentiate into three group which are food losses, this is where the food materials lost during preparation, processing and production phases in the food supply chain. Secondly the unavoidable food waste where the inedible parts of food materials lost during consumption phase such as the pineapple peel and fruit core. Last but not least, the avoidable food waste, this happen when the edible food materials that were lost during consumption phase usually happen when there is surplus and wastage (Thi et al., 2015).

In Malaysia, the term of Food waste disposal are under disposal of solid waste, which under the Malaysia Solid Waste and Public Cleansing Management Act 2007 (Act 672). Other study found out that it is a method where it carries out the destruction, incineration, deposit or decomposing (Ngapan et al., 2012). The most common method that been used to eradicate the waste are commonly the land fill and the incineration. This can be proven when according to Haliza (2013), the utilization of incinerator has been commonly used as the garbage problem has also become increased. Many of the landfill in Malaysia has reached its capacity in a meantime create difficulty in managing the waste (Moh and Manaf, 2014). According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the food waste has been recovered around 3% and recycled at the same time, which has leave about 97% of the landfills to produce the methane gas. The rotting food has produced harmful gas that is bad for the environment especially the greenhouse (GHG) that could affect the changes in the climate. To add it up, methane more harmful which is 23 times more powerful and hazardous rather than greenhouse gas that known as CO2. Thus, by recycling and composting became the important fundamental in order to reduce the number of food waste.

In Malaysia, the issues of food waste has gain many attention and concern to several parties. This is because of Malaysia is a multi-racial country and vis-a-vas known for its variety of food. A study by Hayati Ismail, director of the Food Aid Foundation as stated in Channel NewsAsia (2017) found out that, during festive period there is 50% tendency to generate food waste and at the same time ignore the problem that currently are facing especially the food waste. According to Solid Waste Corporation Malaysia (SWCorp), it is about 38,000 tonnes of waste per day that Malaysian generates and half of it which is 15,000 tonnes is food waste. To add it up, Mohd Pauze Mohamed Taha, Deputy CEO of SWCorp (Technical) stated about 8000 tonnes which is nearly 60% of the waste are avoidable food. Due to that, the waste could be decrease if there is proper management and proper consideration of resources (Channel NewsAsia, 2017).

With the growing number of University and college, it also has influence the number of waste to be increase which lead to environmental impact. Thus, it is important to manage food waste so that in future generation has the opportunity to live in a sustainable development. Ideally, the food waste needs to be manage well and there must be some practice so that people are encourages in doing it. A study found out that, in Swansea University in United Kingdom, they reduce food waste by reducing the size of the serving plates to 10 inches and it give positive impact in serving size. Therefore, in this research we want to discover the practice of food waste management especially in University Malaysia Sabah (UMS).

Issues of Food Waste essay

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Issues of Food Waste. (2020, Sep 04). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/issues-of-food-waste/

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