KT For Good: Let's continue to join hands to combat food waste

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KT For Good: Lets continue to join hands to combat food waste

As the 'Save Food, Save Lives' campaign comes to an end, we examine the impact it has had on Khaleej Times readers.

by Dhanusha Gokulan

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Published: Sat 18 May 2019, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Sat 18 May 2019, 11:08 AM

While you enjoy a delicious, warm, home-cooked meal after a long day of fasting this Holy Month of Ramadan, remember - an estimated 124 million people in 51 countries are currently facing a 'food insecurity crisis' or worse.
'Think before you bin it' and 'be conscious of the food you pile on your plate' has been two of the most compelling message Khaleej Times has tried to convey through the 14-day 'Save Food, Save Lives', #KTforGood campaign this month.
With combined effort from the Khaleej Times print and web team, we have presented an abundance of content relating to food conservation. From May 5 to 19, the Save Food, Save Lives campaign has reached people through online polls, Q&A's, videos, articles, and the FoodSoldier competition to raise awareness on the subject of food conservation.
With 14 stories, two polls, three videos, and the FoodSolider competition that appeared both in our print and digital platform, we were able to create an outreach of 301,976 digital impressions.
Some of the topics we covered include - fight against food waste begins at home, Dubai Municipality's Food Banks, transforming leftovers into a new dish, bulk shopping, and the issues of food waste in buffets.
The most popular story in the campaign was the story titled 'Fight against food waste begins at home' with 6,100 shares. The second most popular story was titled 'This Ramadan, let's work towards food waste reduction' with 146 shares. A story on fussy eaters garnered 12 votes and 96 shares.
Meanwhile, the campaign also organised two social media polls. The first one asked the reader: Do you have a habit of throwing leftover food in the trash? A total of 8,600 voters said Yes (2,947 - 34 per cent) and a total of 5,653 voters said No (66 per cent).
The second poll was titled 'Do you shop with a grocery list to avoid unnecessary purchases?' Of the 1,956 voters, 1,213 (62 per cent) said yes and 743 (38 per cent) said no. The most popular video 'Combating food wastage: Creating 'best' out of 'waste' video saw 17,000 views, eight comments, and 70 shares.
The second most popular video - 'Food wastage: misuse of wealth' - had 4,700 views, 53 likes, six comments, and ten shares. Meanwhile, the 'Smart Shopper' video garnered 4,700 views, 32 likes and nine shares.
Each story was padded with live examples from UAE residents, food experts, nutritionists, composting experts, environmentalists, as well as inputs from Dubai Municipality. Thanks to the competition 'KTFoodSolider', the reaction from readers has been overwhelming, with many competitors sharing their experiences and tips on how they save food at home. Some of the key issues discussed in the campaign include the waste of wealth and nutrition that arises from food waste. Experts from Dubai Municipality and Emirates Nature - WWF have also said food waste is one of the biggest contributors to global warming.
However, the fight against food wastage must not end with the #KTforGood campaign. Next time you want to bin the leftover broccoli and mashed potatoes, think about the economic, social, and environmental impact your act is going to make. Let's not stop our conservation efforts with this campaign, let's continue to save food and save lives. 

Dhanusha Gokulan
Dhanusha Gokulan

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