What is food sustainability? Sustainable food doesn’t refer to food alone. Instead, it includes multiple factors such as how the food is produced, distributed, packaged, and consumed. Factors such as sustainable farming practices, carbon emissions during transportation, animal welfare, protection of public health and community support all play a part in producing sustainable food.
Many factors contribute to food sustainability, such as food production, food distribution, food packaging, food consumption, and more. In Singapore, more than 90% of all food is imported; thus, it is difficult for us to control every aspect of the production process from start to finish.
In recent years, Singapore has taken significant strides towards sustainability. Not only will this improve the food security in Singapore, but it also allows us to locally track all food production practices and adopt many new innovative technologies to improve food production and food quality management!
However, what can we do as individuals to advocate and improve the food sustainability scene in Singapore?
Here are 3 simple ways you can help promote food sustainability in Singapore!
1) More fruits and vegetables, Less meat
Meat production is a notable contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and it requires significantly more food, water, land, time, and energy to raise this livestock compared to growing fruits and vegetables. Furthermore, growing more fruits and vegetables also has its environmental benefits as these plants will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide (greenhouse gas) in the air. Studies have also shown that eating more fruits and vegetables and less meat has many health benefits and is very good for the body. So by changing your diet slightly, not only will you be able to save the environment and its natural resources, but it will also be much better for your body as a whole!
2) Support local businesses that promote sustainability
Local businesses such as Kausmo, Labyrinth, The Summerhouse adopt sustainable business practices by adopting zero-waste and farm-to-table concepts in their kitchens. These concepts reduce food wastage, transportation and resource cost. Additionally, locally produced foods tend to be fresher, more nutritious, and have longer shelf lives when compared to imported food.
Similarly, we can also support sustainability projects and organisations such as Just Dabao, which helps F&B businesses in Singapore sell their surplus food to customers at discounted prices - helping reduce food waste and generate revenue for businesses.
3) Spread the word
Word of mouth can spread incredibly quickly. Talk to your friends and family and share more about food sustainability and its many benefits to society. The more momentum the movement gains, the more Earth can recover.
Food sustainability is an important topic that should be more prominent. We must all do our part to push this initiative by including more sustainable foods options into our daily lives and adopting more food saving habits! Our future heavily depends on the effort we put in today.