Consumer behavior needs to change to limit food waste

bag of food waste on a plate and cutlery
(Photo: Envato Elements)
AMMAN — Minister of Agriculture Khaled Al-Hneifat recently said that 34 percent of food in Jordan is wasted.اضافة اعلان

If citizens are to deal with the predicted global food crisis, whose features are beginning to appear in many countries, consumer culture needs to change, say specialists in the field, stressing the need to exert collective efforts to raise awareness, at official and populace level, about the importance of rationing food.

Director-General of the Jordan Farmers Union Mahmoud Al-Oran underlined the fact that the problem of food waste lies “with citizens’ consumption policy”.

He even has a classification of consumers of vegetables and fruits: those who purchase fresh produce in greater quantities than they need, “which is the category that wastes food in large proportion”, those who “buy in quantities that are commensurate with their needs”, and those who buy the lowest-priced produce, “due to their limited income”, which is usually of lower quality.
34% of food in Jordan is wasted
Oran believes that changing consumer behavior — when it comes to fruits and vegetables — and “purchasing in moderation would contribute to reducing the amount of food waste”.

Member of the Board of Directors of Jordanian Poultry Producers Association Hassan Bu Diqer told Jordan News that as far as he knows, there is no waste in poultry consumption.

“Consumers purchase as much as they need, so the poultry sector may witness the least waste,” he said, attributing this to the storage options, which force “citizens to consume poultry within a short period of time, and therefore there is no waste”.

Poultry breeder Saad Al-Ramahi told Jordan News that he collects leftover food and feeds it to his poultry; “this way, I do not waste any excess amount of food”.

Hanin Al-Jarhi, director of public relations at a waste management company, said that her company started an initiative in Aqaba governorate three years ago, “collecting food from hotels and restaurants during Ramadan buffets” and distributing it “to approximately 200 needy families each Ramadan”.

Um Hamad, housewife and breadwinner for six individuals, told Jordan News that she is “keen to cultivate a culture of appreciation” in her family.

“I collect, wrap and serve excess food to needy people, to teach my children not to dump surplus foods in the waste,” she said.

According to Mohammed Al-Jeitan, former vice president of the Jordan Chamber of Commerce, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed “the phenomenon of food waste”, stressing that it contributed to modifying the consumer behavior” in this regard.

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