The population of the Philippines stands at roughly 102 million and 27 million of this number live below poverty line. Moreover, 13.5 million of the economically poor are unable to eat three times a day, with 2.7 million families experiencing involuntary hunger at least once in the past three months.
Despite this challenge in terms of hunger and food security, it has also been estimated that Filipinos waste up to 308,000 tons of rice every year. In Metro Manila, 2,175 tons of food end up in trash bins daily.
Clearly, there is a gap between the amount of food that we are able to supply and produce, and the demand which this supply should be able to address. A great part of this problem lies in the traditional consumption and production processes which have already been established in our economy.
The food service industry accounts for a substantial share of local consumption and production as dining out is fast becoming a part of the Filipino’s daily habit. In fact, spending on restaurants and hotels is the 2nd highest in terms of consumption expenditure growth, which indicates a growing culture of out-of-home consumption. Due to economic growth and increased income, Filipinos are now more willing to spend on higher value goods and services, such as better quality meals, ready-to-eat food delivery services, and new restaurant trends.
These challenges and opportunities have led WWF-Philippines to champion the concepts of sustainable consumption and production as key drivers of achieving balance between the socio-economic growth of the country as well as the protection of our natural resources and food security. Through integrating sustainable consumption and production principles into our national and local policies, as well as in business practices and consumer top-of-mind behavior, it is possible to eradicate hunger, further stimulate economic growth, and protect the resources that ensure food security in the country.
With The Sustainable Diner project, WWF-Philippines hopes to lessen food wastage and contribute to the improvement of the implementation of sustainable consumption and production processes in the foodservice sector. The Sustainable Diner project aims to engage the government, food service businesses, and consumers in promoting sustainable dining practices and in making The Philippines’ food service industry more environmentally friendly.
This project is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI). The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag.