Repurposing Food Waste From Eateries

Food wastage is a growing global crisis that is affecting the physical health of the earth and the population inhabiting the entire planet. According to the Solid Waste Management and Public Cleansing Corporation (SW Corp), around 16688 tonnes of food are wasted in Malaysia daily. On top of that, the amount rises by 15%-20% during festive seasons. However, most of the restaurants in Malaysia are still unaware about the issue on how to handle the leftover food by customers. Therefore, the approach of the project team is to develop a sustainable and affordable system to handle the leftover food. This was done by developing a cloud system in an application and also implementing a multifunction bin that can be placed in the kitchen of the restaurant. In the end, the team was able to achieve 2 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) which are the SDG 2, Zero Hunger and SDG 12, Responsible Consumption and Production.

Food waste can occur due to numerous factors throughout the food production in restaurants such as processing, distribution, retail and consumption. It has been reported that majority of food waste originates from the consumption stage in developed countries; approximately 100 kilograms of food is wasted per person every year. The increase of food waste is causing landfills to overfill and produce harmful greenhouse gases such as methane.
Our mission at SPARE.RIBS is encourage clients to be more responsible, conscious and knowledgeable on environmental care.
After generating information from observations and interviews from various restaurants and eateries, we have found that not many are concerned about participating in the food waste issues nor do they have collaborations with charities and other organisations. Even so, restaurants who are willing to take action on the issue states that there is no effective and practical way to manage their food waste. Hence, the objective of this project is to generate a sustainable and effective solution to manage food waste.
For our solution, we have developed a system called “SPARE.RIBS.” The system is a one stop service with 2 in one functions which links the SMARTBIN to our application. We introduce a convenient and efficient way to manage food waste. For instance, we can make better use of the surplus food by repurposing it into fertilisers or food for animal feeding.
With the cloud system installed in our application, restaurants are able to customise the system according to their store. The first function of the system allows restaurants to keep track of what is bought, how much is bought and what was in the existing storage. The second function works closely with the SMARTBIN where it records what gets thrown away and how much is thrown away (e.g. the volume of food). Finally, a monthly report will be produced by the application with the types of food and volume of food surplus. Restaurants will be able to receive advisory on their future food purchases to prevent food wastage.
Collection and benefits
In order to encourage restaurants to use the system, pick-up services will be available to pick up the food waste generated in the eateries and will be sold as fertilisers and food for animal feeding. The benefits will be calculated per KG and transferred via online transfer. This way, restaurants can be sustainable and earn secondary income.

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