Malaysians’ awareness about recycling food to reduce food waste is poor, although about 90 per cent of food waste is biodegradable and easy to recycle.

This shows that Malaysia needs to put in more effort to tackle food waste.

Preventing food waste will reduce the environmental impact of the food supply chain and ensure the world’s food security.

The 3R Initiative aims to promote the 3Rs (reduce, reuse and recycle) globally to build a sound material-cycle society through the effective use of resources and materials. This method encourages people to practise the recycle-and-reuse method.


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Food manufacturers, food retail establishments and supermarkets can donate unsold or excess food to food banks.

People can also reduce food waste by donating safe and edible food that they no longer wish to consume.

Shopping malls and offices can place a bank box on their premises for people to drop off unopened food items.

Next, organising the fridge and pantry can help people keep track of what they have at home and help them to identify food that is ready to eat.

Placing newly bought food at the back of the cupboard or fridge will encourage people to use the food in the front row first, which will ensure freshness and reduce waste.

People can keep the refrigerator below 5° Celcius, storing cooked food on shelves above raw food and storing food in sealed containers to avoid spoilage.

Always transfer leftovers from open cans to containers. Apart from this, people can save leftovers.

Leftovers aren’t just for holidays. Although many people save excess food from large meals, it is often forgotten in the fridge, then thrown away when it goes bad.

People should store leftovers in a clear glass container, rather than in an opaque container.

If people cook a lot and have leftovers, designate a day to eat food that has accumulated in the fridge.

Overeating is also problem for many people.

Making sure portion sizes stay within a healthy range doesn’t just help keep your weight down, but it also reduces food waste.

While we may not think twice about throwing away leftover food, remember that food waste has a major impact on the environment.

Being more mindful of how hungry we are and practising portion control will reduce food waste.