OzHarvest joins United Nations to feed 5000 in Sydney

For the first time ever in Australia, OzHarvest and the United Nations Environment Programme will host an event to raise awareness by feeding 5000 in Sydney with surplus food.

For the first time ever in Australia, OzHarvest as the official Australian partner of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on the global Think.Eat.Save – Reduce your Foodprint campaign, will host an international event, Feeding 5000 in Sydney’s Martin Place next Monday, 29 July from 12 noon until 2pm.

Some of the nation’s top chefs and hundreds of volunteers will join OzHarvest, Australia’s leading food-rescue organisation, in serving 5000 members of the public, a free, delicious hot lunch made from rescued ingredients that would otherwise have ended up as landfill.

Founder and CEO of OzHarvest, Ronni Kahn, said the aim behind is to help raise awareness about food wastage.

As a nation, Australians waste $7.8 billion dollars of food or four million tonnes per annum – that is, we throw away one in every five shopping bags that we buy. Feeding the 5000, will highlight how easy it is to reduce these unimaginable levels of food waste and how individuals, producers, supermarkets and governments can do a lot more to reduce food waste in our country.

Founder and CEO of OzHarvest, Ronni Kahn, said the aim behind the Feeding the 5000 events globally is to help raise awareness about the disturbing amount of food wasted around the world, where roughly one third of food produced for human consumption (approx. 1.3 billion tonnes) gets lost or wasted. The Australian event highlights the amount of food that we waste as a nation, and the direct impact this has on the environment.

“Food waste is a huge challenge that needs to be addressed locally and be embraced within our own homes first, so that we can affect incremental change globally. Our challenge is to create a sustainable food culture that can be shared by all. It’s a paradox that we produce enough food to feed all seven billion of us, yet so many in this world go hungry,” Kahn said.

“The aim of this event is to educate all people – producers, consumers and businesses alike. We should not buy into the fact that fruit and veg needs to be cosmetically beautiful before we’ll buy it, because for every bendy or blemished carrot thrown out – we throw away embedded water, energy and fuel,” she said.

“The way humanity manages or mismanages its food supply will in many ways define the 21st century—currently we know that we are not doing a great job with at least one third of all food produced lost or wasted,” added Nick Nuttall, UNEP spokesperson. “It is an ethical and economic challenge but also an environmental one: for example if food waste and loss was a country it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases.”

“We are delighted that OzHarvest and people across Australia are partnering with the UN on the global Think.Eat.Save – Reduce Your Foodprint campaign. All of us are connected to food and every one of us can make a difference in the lives of those in need and the health of our planet,” he said.

The menu on the day will include items such as surplus vegetable curry and rice, chapatti, saved potato soup with smoked ham hock, rescued bread and butter pudding, relish, gazpacho, yoghurt and lemonade from a number of top chefs.

Should there be any ‘excess’ food left on the plates of the public, ‘clean stations’ and the Closed Loop organic waste recycling machine will be on-site to educate people on how to manage waste at home.

This event is supported by the NSW Environment Protection Authority’s Love Food Hate Waste campaign which will be represented at the event to provide tips to consumers on how to reduce food waste.

To register to attend Feeding the 5000, click here. 

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