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Credit: Sereechai Puttes, Time Out Bangkok

SOS Thailand’s COO tells us how we can get more out of food waste

Bangkok is a huge buffet city, with hotels and restaurants offering daily eat-all-you-can feasts or Sunday brunch specials. Many of these buffets prepare more food than their guests can consume—better be safe than have to deal with hungry, disgruntled customers complaining that there wasn’t enough roast beef.

But have you ever wondered what these restaurants do with all their excess food? Most become food waste, ending up in trash bins and, later, landfills. (64 percent of Bangkok landfills are made up of food waste.) Have you ever wondered if there was any way you could perhaps make sure that all these surplus food doesn’t just go to the bin? An NGO in Thailand has.

Read the full article to find out more here.

By Gail Piyanan and Thana Boonlert for Time Out Bangkok.

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Bamboo Straws Poolside at Anantara Golden Triangle (Credit: unknown via Mark Thomson)

Anantara and AVANI Hotels & Resorts are proud to announce the decision to end the use of plastic drinking straws at all hotels and resorts in Asia from 1 January 2018. The first major hotel brands to announce a companywide decision to eradicate plastic straws at every single property across the Asia region with a view to extend the roll out to properties in Australasia, Europe and the Middle East by the end of the year.

In the serene mountainous region of Northern Thailand, Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is working with a local artist, Khamchan Yano, who was shown by the village elders a fast growing wild bamboo, indigenous to the surrounds. Together they have perfected a way to keep the bamboo strong whilst also ensuring it is hygienic and reusable.

Read the full article on the initiative here.

By Mark Thomson on LinkedIn.

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Water feature: Aqualagon with its amazing water slides is the main attraction. Photograph: Luc Boegly

There’s some weirdness attached to Villages Nature, the Disney-imagineered vision of rustic life, but the waterslides are amazing and there’s lots for kids to do

Welcome to the strangely disconcerting world of Villages Nature, 20 miles east of Paris and less than three hours on Eurostar direct from London St Pancras. All of this was once disused farmland until Disney and its partner, Pierre et Vacances (which owns Center Parcs Europe), transformed it into a 300-acre eco-resort; a “haven where guests can disconnect and feel at one with nature”. In other words, the polar opposite of the offering up the road – Disneyland Paris. Their hope is that families will be curious to try both these different worlds. It’s easy to see the appeal: when the children are done with Hyperspace Mountain and Pirates of the Caribbean, you can escape back here to the serenity of your Scandi-chic apartment, a gloriously Disney princess-free zone.

Read the full article to find out more about the features of Disneyland’s new eco-resort here.

By  for The Guardian.

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Credit: Shutterstock

 

Winter is back in many parts of our precious world. Skiing and snowboarding trips are on the calendar around the globe. Do you also have a snowy escape lined up? If so, keep on reading to find out how to make your carbon footprint of this trip a barely discernible snowshoe imprint.

To begin, find eco-friendly ski and snowboard equipment – from the actual skis/snowboard to clothing to wax and more. You may also source used equipment instead of buying new to reduce waste to landfill. Remember that you can always recycle/donate used gear that is still in good used condition. Choose jackets, scarves, gloves and boots that are previously loved or made from recycled material. Fleece products, for example, are often made from recycled plastic bottles.

Get to the slopes by using shared shuttle services or other public transportation instead of a personal car. This will help to reduce carbon emissions, air pollution and noise – not to mention eliminate the worry of your car getting stuck in the snow! Check out these ‘car-free’ and ‘no-car-needed’ ski resorts when choosing your holiday destination. Choosing an accommodation and ski resort that is dedicated to greening the slopes will help to lower the negative environmental impact or even result in a carbon neutral holiday. Look for opportunities to offset your footprint. Read more about how one ski resort aims at cutting carbon emissions to zero in the future.

All set for going down the slopes? For more food for thought on your next active winter vacation, read about the environmental impact of ski resorts and solutions and alternatives here. Let’s all go green so we can keep our slopes powdery!

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TaxiBot in action at Frankfurt Airport. Driven by electric motors, the tractors are real powerhouses — the narrow-body model has around 500 kilowatts of drive output (approximately 800 hp). Credit: Lufthansa LEOS

 

Until now, airplanes have had to use their own turbines to travel from the gate to the runway. But thanks to drive technology from Siemens, an all-new diesel-electric towing tractor controlled from a plane’s cockpit can now perform this task. Known as TaxiBots, the tractors save fuel, extend maintenance intervals, and cut noise. Already certified for the Airbus 320, TaxiBots will soon be able to safely pull about 70 percent of all the passenger planes worldwide.

Read the full article on this environmentally friendly taxiing solution here.

By Christine Rüth and Sebastian Webel for Siemens’ Pictures of the Future.

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Tips to avoid food waste from Mario Batali, other top chefs in Anthony Bourdain’s ‘Wasted!’

Categories: Food & Beverage, Planet, Recommended Reading, Waste
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Wait not, waste not: Chef Mario Batali says to “prep ingredients when you first bring them home, immediately after shopping.” (WASTED!)

 

Chew on this: American families chuck 25% of the food and beverages they buy. On average, that means $1,820 per household gets thrown away annually. The U.S. isn’t alone. Around the globe, 1.3 billion tons of food gets tossed per year.

Those are just two eye-opening bites from the documentary “Wasted! The Story of Food Waste,” out Oct. 13. Produced by celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and directed by Emmy Award winners Anna Chai and Nari Kye, the film seeks to change how people buy, cook and eat food.

Read the full article on how to avoid food waste here.

By Joe Dziemianowicz for New York Daily News.

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The aviation industry is responsible for two percent of global emissions. If you care about the environment but also love travelling you can help to reduce your impact by utilising your airline loyalty mileage.

 

Buying carbon offsets

Choose an airline that offers carbon offsetting opportunities. The majority of airlines, including major carriers such as United and Thai, offer voluntary carbon offsets when selling tickets so that customers may elect to compensate by supporting a carbon reduction project.

 

More information on carbon emission calculations is provided by the International Air Transport Association’s Carbon Offset Programme. Read more about carbon offset programmes here.

 

Donating mileage and reward points

Donate your air miles to environmental charities such as carbonfund.org which helps people and businesses to reduce and offset climate impact. You may also donate your miles to initiatives such as Cathay Pacific’s FLY greener programme.

 

You can also buy carbon offsets from projects that reduce CO2 emissions. This is an excellent way of utilising your loyalty mileage before the expiration date. Programmes may also be available for businesses and for cargo shipments.  Get ideas as about how you can donate your air miles.

 

Using mileage for eco-friendly products

Look for programmes that enable you to use your air miles for products that are environmentally friendly. For example, Air Canada’s My Planet programme allows customers to use rewards and points to purchase eco-friendly products and services – from electric scooters to organic cotton sheets.

 

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Discussing how to reduce buffet waste during a panel discussion at the Ideo offices in New York. John Taggart for the New York Times.

Lawrence Eells, the executive chef at the Hyatt Regency Orlando, in Florida, would like his kitchen, or at least its operations, to be as lean as his roast beef. So in April, he welcomed a team of researchers looking at ways to reduce food waste, especially around the abundant all-you-can-eat buffets.

Their initial finding — that guests ate just over half of the food put out — surprised almost everyone. Perhaps even more striking was that only 10 to 15 percent of the leftovers could be donated or repurposed because of food safety regulations, while the rest ended up in the garbage. The sizable waste generated by coffee, juices and other liquids added to the conundrum.

Read the full article to find out ways found to reduce food waste in hotels. 

 

By Linda Himelstein for The New York Times. 

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Startup helps Ikea save 350,000 meals from the trash can

Categories: Food & Beverage, Recommended Reading
Comments Off on Startup helps Ikea save 350,000 meals from the trash can

Credit: Shutterstock

 

A startup is turning waste into wealth by helping companies like Ikea slash the amount of food they throw away.

 

The global hospitality industry trashes food worth $100 billion a year, estimates Winnow, which says its technology can save commercial kitchens big bucks and stop good food going to waste.

Winnow shows chefs how much they’re wasting in real time, and what it costs their employers.

Retail giant Ikea estimates that Winnow (and U.S. competitor LeanPath) have helped its in-store restaurants save the equivalent of 350,000 meals worth nearly $900,000 in just eight months.

 

Read how Winnow is helping restaurants like IKEA slash the amount of food they throw away. 

By Jim Boulden @CNNMoney

 

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Credit: Shutterstock

 

Eating sustainably is essential if we are to preserve our planet. Here are five tips about to make a difference.

 

  • Choose local and organic food

 

Try to buy locally-grown food as this has multiple benefits such as fewer greenhouse gas emissions from transporting and refrigerating the food and the preservation of jobs in the local community. There is, thankfully, already an increase in the consumption of local products,

 

Try also to purchase organic foods – grown without artificial pesticides and fertilisers. These foodstuffs are healthier and have less impact upon the environment.

 

  • Choose more plant-based foods

 

Reducing the volume of meat consumption has a significantly beneficial effect upon the environment. Pesticides may be used for meat production and valuable resources are needed to raise livestock such as cattle, pigs and chickens. For example, it is estimated that 16,000 litres of water are needed to produce 1kg of beef. If a family of four skips eating beef once a week it has the same beneficial effect upon the environment as not using a petrol or diesel car for three months. Click here for some healthy vegan recipes.

 

  • Choose seasonal foods

 

Eating seasonal foods means that there is a smaller chance the food has not been grown in artificial conditions nor transported from the other side of the world. Choosing to eat seasonal foods also brings variation to your diet as well that all-important fresh flavour.

 

  • Grow it yourself

 

If you have a garden, big or small, find some space to grow vegetables. It’s fun; it makes you appreciate your food, and it also contributes towards our goal of achieving a healthier, more sustainable world.

 

  • Get inspired and Inspire others

 

Talk to other food lovers who wish to be more environmentally-conscious about where it comes from and how it is grown. Learn more from the producers selling products at your local farmers’ market. Share your new-found knowledge with family and friends. You may learn from each other. Here are some sustainable food documentaries that may also help to inspire you.

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