I know most of you would greatly oppose my statement that ‘food somewhere is food nowhere’ but I am in my gloves ready to prove you wrong. I am out to eat and live so that I can give a testimony to the coming generations the importance of clearing food and forwarding only plates to the sink.
It is not long since I was at Uhuru Park, Nairobi in the ‘Kenyans for Kenya’ campaign whose aim was to raise funds to feed empty stomachs in the North of the very country. Elsewhere in the country farmers were complaining of bumper harvests that had staled in the shamba; maize, potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, kales…gone bad. All these as a result of inefficient storage, poor infrastructure to ferry goods to the starving North and worse of all the neighbor has plenty of it and therefore no need for charity. As the farmer was cursing of wasted efforts, the wasted food was hungry because it was not consumed.
The human feeding lifestyle is growing more and more unique with time! While the slum family is fighting over ‘ugali-salt’ supper, the elite’s pride is to throw half-consumed chicken into the bin. It is so shocking that food for pigs is a hot cake business at the dumping site especially from the posh garbage. I guess it must have been an Easter celebration if the wasted food found itself in the gates of children’s home or those street urchins! Will it not be fair enough for you Mr/Ms ‘foody’ thinking over this and taking necessary action?
My roommate is never at peace when he sees half-empty cooking pot on the cooker. He could better witness food remains than clear his plate! The room conditioning is gone pathetic because he never empties the rotten tomatoes. He brought so much from home and was never at ease when I gave out some to our neighbor. I wish you could hold to my granny’s ‘left-over theory’. Please promise to cook enough and purchase wisely.
I like attending parties and social gatherings. In most cases I witness people eat themselves sick! It is so funny that the uneaten food in such functions can account for almost half of the preparation budget! I think it never kills for you to serve what can hold your stomach; neither does it cost anything to go for a top-up. Safe the rest for tomorrow because you never know what it brings.
Walking across the retail market a strange smell hits my nose. This is from the decomposing heaps of perished foodstuffs piled in the open space. The trader made haste to harvest the maximum even with the knowledge of market situation. He even disposed some that appeared 'ugly'. It is high time we stop emphasizing on appearance and go for nutrition!
Just think of that time you will be yearning for your favorite meal and it misses! The very food you were consuming carelessly has gone too expensive or no longer exists. You saw it go into waste in that conscious mind and now your health is compromised because of the decomposing gas inhalation. The very gas that accelerates global warming! The leachate contaminated water you drunk is now a threat to your meager salary. Unsightly dumping sites have replaced aesthetic sceneries. You will soon turn into the wild for easily accessible food but remember it is shot lived too! Let today’s surplus be tomorrow’s saving!
-Abednego Osindi (Bsc. Environmental Science, UoN)-
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