This post on India and Hunger made me realize just how far I am from my country, and what it has become. This blogger writes and I quote:
“One of the sights that greets us each and every day is wasted food lying on the street, in the slum lanes, in garbage dumps, just about everywhere. You see there is always a wedding, a birthday party, a jagran, a religious do, you name it and it is there. At each and every venue there are heaps of plastic and thermocol plates still filled with good and clean food. It is just strewn on the ground till the cleaners sweep it away and carry it to the dump. But food is not only wasted during festivals or special occasions, it is wasted every day in every home as if throwing food was a way of stating that you had reached, that you had graduated from the rural to the urban status. It seems the be the new mantra of success in the slums. I see it every day.”
Preventing waste and recycling was part of my culture, my parents did it as a matter of course: using shopping bags not plastic, turning vegetable peels into manure for the garden, using package bottles and boxes to store other things, never throwing away a grain of rice.
We were taught to polish off everything on our plate, and hand any left-over food to those who needed it.
Wasting food to show off how rich you are is a new and disgusting concept, especially in a country where hundreds die each minute of malnutrition. Hunger in India is a killer, and 20% of the population in my country is chronically hungry. But I guess a generation of the rich, and even the not-so-rich, sold to the glories of excess, and aspiring towards owning Versaces and Rolexes will never understand that.
In my years away from India, I had always thought the values we were taught as children and those we saw around us have remained. But change is the law of the universe, so I guess my country is changing. Sigh.
In your country, do you witness food wastage? Are there any measures in place to prevent it?
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