Despite the Japanese concept of “mottainai,” which conveys a feeling of remorse due to waste, food loss in Japan is still a rampant issue with about 6.5 million tons of food being tossed out every year. This is about one bowl of food per person every day, according to a report by MAFF.
Food Waste in Japan: Turning Food Scraps Into Fine Dining
To demonstrate how food scraps can be rescued and given a second life, byFood challenged chef Suzuki, the owner-chef of Yasaito, to give a live cooking show using ingredients that would otherwise be discarded.
The end result was an elegant and sustainable meal using produce that is deemed unsellable, such as tough daikon radish, carrot and potato skins, and pineapple rinds–provided by Sunrise Co., Ltd. and Kagome Co., Ltd.
ByFood's Sustainable Dinner Menu - December 9, 2020
Starter: Green onion and tuna with vinegar and miso
Salad: Hot cabbage salad with pineapple and Japanese-style soy sauce dressing
Soup: Creamy potage made from the skins of potatoes & carrots
Tempura: Green onion & shrimp kakiage with grated daikon radish
Nimono: Boiled daikon radish and chicken
Hot pot: Chinese cabbage and pork
Rice: Takikomi gohan (mixed rice) with daikon, carrot, green onion, and dried tomato
Soup: Miso soup with carrot and cabbage
Dessert: Pineapple frozen yogurt
Through this experience, byFood aims to educate and bring awareness to the issue of food waste in Japan and promote sustainable eating. As a CSV (Creating Shared Value) business, supporting the United Nation’s SDGs, particularly zero hunger, is part of the company’s mission. It is byFood’s hope that this can become a regular event, bookable on byFood.com, as part of an ongoing conversation about sustainability.
This sustainable fine dining experience was made possible thanks to ImpacTech and the Nippon Foundation Social Change Makers Program, and was organized in tandem with CRUST, a food tech company that upcycles leftover bread and produce to make beer and other beverages.