Dealing with Food Waste Requires Passion and Creativity, Asserts Dr Stephen Wilkinson
Present-day food waste is a major problem. According to Dr Stephen Wilkinson, Director of Research at University of Wollongong in Dubai, a number of entrepreneurs are working on this in Dubai, particularly with supermarkets and the food that is lost from shelves, for consumption or composting.
Speaking at the Future of Sustainability Conference hosted by SME in Dubai, Dr Wilkinson highlighted the importance of being creative when it comes to dealing with food waste.
Dr Wilkinson gave a personal illustration, saying: "My wife used to run a surplus food cafe in the UK that was 'pay as you feel', because it was illegal to sell items that were past their sell by date.
"But she made some amazing things from this excess food to keep it out of the trash and every day she would get in completely different ingredients and she would make something completely original. Interestingly, there was no menu at the cafe."
Dr Wilkinson was responding to Karl W. Feilder, the conference's host and moderator, who said: "Dubai dumps 2,500 tonnes of organic waste every day. The majority of it will breakdown into methane, a highly dangerous greenhouse gas."
The two sustainability experts concurred that there is much more that needs to be done to handle organic waste effectively rather than simply dumping, catching the created methane, and flaring it in the atmosphere.