Wasting Food

food-wasteAccording to reports by United Nations Environment Programme and the World Resource institute, about one third of all food produced worldwide gets lost or wasted in food production and consumption systems. When converted to calories, it means that about 1 in 4 calories intended for consumption is never eaten. This food is wasted for several reasons. Much is lost because it does not fulfill the aesthetic requirements of shops, and hence indirectly, consumers. And of the food that is actually bought, a lot is thrown away, and some of it due to expiration dates being set too early. It is clear that food wastage is a massive problem and it reveals some interesting characteristics of the human being, and also many opportunities of self-correction, where we as humanity can change ourselves on a individual level, to as such make an impact globally.

What does food wastage show us about ourselves? It shows us that we do not value the labor and energy that has gone into creating that food – for us – food has become only a number – a cost that we buy using money. Though, fact is that food is more than a number, because to create each produce we eat, an investment of real resources had to be made. The farmer had to put in great effort to grow his crops and care for his cattle. The slaughter had to exert himself with determination and strength to slaughter and prepare the meat for consumption. And nature, the animals, and plants had to offer themselves, their lives, to nurture and support our continued existence. As such, food cannot be measured in money, food is a work of art, that has been given a attention and energy to end up in the supermarkets where we are used to seeing it.

When we take food and only eat some of it, or we buy too much, and throw away the things that we allow to go bad, what are we thus really saying? In-fact it is an act of negligence and ignorance to treat food as having no value – negligent because there is not much we need to change about ourselves to become a more considerate and effective when it comes to handling our food – and ignorant because we do not see the amount of work that has gone into the food, which we so easily make a decision to throw away.

Thus, if we wish to stop waste in this world, we must begin with ourselves, and understand that wastefulness occurs not only with food, but it is the way in which we have come to live. Our entire society is based on waste, and the false belief that there are eternal resources, eternal opportunities, and eternal energy for us to consume without consequences. Truth is that, there is no such thing as a free lunch – and for each resource we waste – there is one resource less to be used.

Though, let us take this one step further, and ask ourselves, where are we wasting ourselves? Fact is that as with all things that we create on the outside, we are also creating and living them inside of ourselves. Are we not wasteful with ourselves, and our own potential when we accept and allow ourselves to give up on our future, and what we know we can create for ourselves, because we do not feel motivated? Are we not wasteful when we decide to not do the most with ourselves, and our lives? Are we not wasteful when we decide to throw away our talents, because we do not experience ourselves as having the energy to develop them? Are we not wasteful when we throw away moments in our day to get to know ourselves, and our mind better, because we accept and allow ourselves to be afraid of self-intimacy? Are we not wasteful when we spend hours, upon hours in a emotional reaction, time that we could have instead used to LIVE and participate HERE?

There are many ways that waste come through within ourselves, in our lives, and thus, in this world. And it is important for us to investigate how we are wasting, so that we can stop this behavior, and instead live our lives within the starting point of using – and as such – being useful instead of wasteful.

How can we change ourselves to direct the waste that occurs in our daily lives into a using and usefulness? Because in answering, and living the answer to these questions, we can make a big difference for others and ourselves as well – as we stand as an example of what it means to respect the life within us and this world – where we do not accept and allow waste to exist within us.

Waste happens when we do not push ourselves to see the value in what is here, to appreciate to what is here, and be grateful for what is here. Waste happens when we take things for granted. Waste happens when we become caught in our desires, and our urge to experience things, and we miss the reality, the universe of life that is here as a part of our world. WASTE occurs when we walk through life in HASTE, thinking about only our own WAIST – and not understanding that our actions and inactions have consequences. Hence, as a first step to change the massive waste that happens daily in this world on a myriad of levels, let us change ourselves – and make sure that we are not accepting and allowing waste to take place in any form within ourselves, or our lives.

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