Malaysians waste 8,000 tonnes of food per day

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysians waste up to 8,000 tonnes or 8 million kilogrammes of food a day, and this amount can feed six million people.

Solid Waste Management and Public Cleansing Corporation's chief executive officer, Datuk Ab Rahim Md Noor said the solid waste management cost, including for discarded food, ran into billions of ringgit.

"If we look at the percentage composition of food waste among the solid waste, it is the highest at 45% while the cost of managing solid waste in states under our supervision had reached RM1.6 billion last year.

"This situation is very worrying and hence, we will be launching the Mindset Transformation Programme this October to change people's way of thinking so as not to throw away food indiscriminately," he said at a news conference, here, today.

Ab Rahim said the programme would involve the cooperation of eatery operators, hotels and the food industry to donate their surplus food to needy welfare bodies.

He said the corporationa also found the percentage of food waste to be increasing by 15-20% during the festive seasons.

Ab Rahim said besides focusing on curbing food wastage, the programme was also aimed at making Malaysia a clean, beautiful and orderly country by 2020.

"Hopefully, this programme would help increase the 3R (reduce, reuse and recycle) practice in solid waste management, thus reducing dependence on the use of natural resources which are increasingly limited.

"This programme is also to educate the public on environmental conservation and to view it seriously," he said. – Bernama