Multiple measures taken to stop food wastage

NANJING: Canteens at Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics in Jiangsu Province, east China, have started to offer students smaller portions of rice with the price of 0.1 yuan ($0.015) each, and reward those who finish their meals with free fruits and yogurt.
This is the university’s latest practice to participate in the nationwide campaign called Empty Your Plate, which was launched in 2013 to reduce the wastage of food.
In 2019, a research published by the Chinese Academy of Sciences showed that urban cities in China wasted 17 to 18 billion kilograms of food in 2015, equal to the annual food consumption of 30 to 50 million people.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has repeatedly called for putting an end to wasting food. In August, he called on the country to maintain a sense of crisis about food security, despite years of bumper crops, amid the fallout from the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak.
He said the levels of food waste in the country are “shocking and distressing”, and urged relevant departments to build a long-term mechanism to stop food wastage. Jiang Junxian, President of the China Cuisine Association (CCA), said that restaurants should reasonably adjust the number and weight of dishes offered, promote separate meals and take the initiative to provide small and half portions of dishes to customers.
On August 12, Meituan, a leading online food ordering platform in China, published a proposal with the China General Chamber of Commerce, CCA and other practitioners in the catering industry, calling on restaurants to stop food waste and help cultivate new eating habits for customers. Restaurants are asked to offer guidance for diners, including reminding them about the portion sizes about the dishes, to help them avoid excessive ordering and food waste, according to, a financial media outlet. The proposal also encouraged restaurants to innovate means of publicity by using official accounts on social media and live-streaming to promote and advocate food-saving habits.
Quanjude, a popular Peking roast duck restaurant chain, responded to the call recently by serving duck packages of smaller portions for solo diners. Some restaurants in Shanghai have also launched new menus, marking the grams of dishes to guide consumers to order reasonably. Chinese catering associations in more than 18 provinces have joined the campaign to eliminate food waste. CCA announced on August 14 that it had teamed up with, a major food delivery platform under Alibaba, to launch a half-dish plan encouraging restaurants to provide customers with the option to order smaller portions.
The Wuhan Catering Association proposed an N-1 ordering code for restaurants in which customers are encouraged to order one dish less than the amount of people. More food is only brought to the table if required. Local authorities in Shijiazhuang, Hebei Province in north China, have launched similar initiatives. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic and economic slowdowns, food wastage has increasingly become a global problem. A recent report released in August by the United Nations warned that the world is on the verge of the worst food crisis in 50 years, and almost 690 million people in the world were undernourished in 2019.
– The Daily Mail-Beijing Review News exchange item