Half of the vegetables in restaurants go to waste
In a study on the identification of food waste, it has been revealed that 68 percent of vegetables in restaurants go to waste. Vegetables is followed by meat and bread with 13.7 percent and side dishes with 10.3 percent.
The conversion of food produced for human consumption into waste causes waste not only of food, but also of time, energy, labor, money and natural resources spent in the production and consumption cycle. In order to determine the food waste generated in restaurants in Istanbul, a research was conducted in first and second class restaurants. In the study, the food group that creates the most waste was also examined. The results revealed that 68 percent of vegetables create waste in the kitchen, followed by meats and bread group, frozen foods, breakfast products and appetizers. Carrying out the research, Res. Assist. from Istanbul Gelisim University Gastronomy and Culinary Arts Department Emel Çirişoğlu said, “Considering that vegetables are the most wasted, 49 million tons of vegetables and fruits are produced in Turkey every year. When we look at this production, only 52 percent of fruits and vegetables can reach consumers. The remainder is estimated to be wasted between 25 percent and 40 percent due to exposure to bad conditions in the food supply chain.”
1/3 OF THE FOOD PRODUCED IS WASTEDNoting that food waste continues to increase as a global problem, Çirişoğlu said, “One third of the food produced in the world is wasted before it reaches the consumer. It means that food waste per person reaches up to 100 kilograms.”
Çirişoğlu said that the servicing constitutes 14 percent of food sector in the world and gave details about the research, “In the research, we discussed the sections where food wastes are most common in 3 units: purchasing and storage, kitchen and service. We have shown that wastes are formed mostly in the kitchen and service departments.”
79 PERCENT OF WASTE IS CREATED IN THE SERVICEÇirişoğlu said, “We observed that 79 percent of the waste is generated in the service department. In the kitchen, during the preparation and cooking stages, approximately 38 percent of food waste is generated.”
ATTENTION TO WASHING, CHOPPING, SORTING!Reminding that the most waste-generating product in the kitchen is vegetables, Çirişoğlu pointed out that it is necessary to pay attention to processes such as washing, chopping and sorting and said “It causes many losses here. According to researches, when these processes are done with machines, a waste rate of 10 percent occurs, while a waste rate of up to 45 percent occurs when done manually. In this context, it is necessary to pay attention to the use of technological tools in the kitchen.”
'WASTE TRAINING' ADVICE TO BUSINESSESÇirişoğlu pointed out that enterprises should receive waste training.
Çirişoğlu stated that in order to prevent waste, resource reduction and prevention methods should be used in the first place and said, “If these steps are not realized, the wastes should be directed to animal shelters for evaluation, directed to compost production or directed to food banks. Public institutions and organizations need to work to ensure coordination between them. When this coordination is achieved, it may be possible to direct the wastes left on the plates of the customers to animal shelters or to compost production in order to obtain natural fertilizers. Thus, a sustainable production approach will be adopted by bringing every waste out of the kitchen back to the kitchen without going to waste.”
Çirişoğlu added that customers should also be informed by businesses.
“WE DO NOT WASTE LEFTOVERS”Restaurant operator Cumali Altındağ pointed out that the most waste occurs in soups and juicy dishes and said, “The more customers we have the more waste we produce and we put it to good use. Instead of wasting it, we give it away to people in need. We take care not to exceed a certain capacity in the products we buy. We pay attention to using daily and fresh products for vegetables.”
Another operator, Yunus Özefe, pointed out that they are careful not to waste leftover food, and said, “No product is wasted when things are too busy. We also give it to stray animals during the weekend. Sometimes people in need come and we give them leftovers rather than wasting. We use a lot of tomatoes, pickles, onions, but they are not left over. Since we buy daily and fresh, we try to buy in accordance with our daily consumption. We don't waste food because we buy as much as we need.”