It may seem paradoxical that the movement to make good use of leftover food has grown during the COVID19 lock-down – a time, during which, restaurants are closed and so do not have any leftovers to share. But this is exactly what is happening for the Foodsharing movement in Austria. According to Katharina Ander, a devoted volunteer in the movement, Foodsharing now encompasses 700 volunteers in her town Graz alone.
“In the last couple of years, the Foodsharing movement has really gained momentum – and even more so during the pandemic. We see a growing number of supermarkets, bakeries and other businesses contacting us because they want to share and have heard about the movement. In fact, we have been active throughout the pandemic during which more people have been in need of a free meal.”
Waste prevention in her blood
The Foodsharing concept entails volunteers collecting overproduced food from bakeries, supermarkets, canteens, restaurants and wholesalers, and then distributing the food, free of charge, to shelters for the homeless, schools, kindergartens and others.
Generally, public awareness of the movement is on the rise in many countries, not just Austria and Germany. This is thanks to people like Katharina Ander who joined the movement in 2014 to fight the massive food waste occurring in many countries today.
She has been active in building the Foodsharing movement in several cities including Leipzig, Freiberg and Braunschweig and Hamm in Germany, and Graz in Austria. Currently, she resides in Graz where she works as an R&D engineer for Redwave, a company that develops and produces waste sorting machines. This means the urge to make sure waste can be reused is part of both her professional and personal life.
UniPak container is part of the solution
Katharina Ander was also the person to get Berry Superfos on board in supporting the movement.
“We need containers every day for storing fresh food and contacted Berry Superfos here in Austria. They were really excited and said yes immediately. They donated the necessary number of their UniPak container which is ideal for the purpose. It is stackable, tight, dishwasher proof, microwave proof, and can be reused over and over. Even the size of 1,2 liter is perfect since it is suitable for a meal for one person.”
The UniPak containers are now being used for storing food in the movement’s publicly accessible shelves and refrigerators, so-called “Fairteiler”, which are available to everyone as a place to pick up food for free.
Food for people in need
When asked why she joined the movement, Katharina Ander says:
“Whenever I see food go to waste my heart aches. It is such a shame when you think about this complex chain involved in getting the food to the store or the restaurant. It is produced and then shipped miles and miles in order to end up in the waste bin. My goal is to save the food and give it to people in need.”
“People in need may not only be those who fall into the official definition of poverty category. We see many other people in need of a free meal. So in the Foodsharing movement, we do not define who is in need - we are open to everyone. We just share,” Katharina Ander concludes.
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- Bianka Cramblit
- Company News
- Created 12 May 2021
- Modified 17 May 2021
- Hits 700