Every year, about one-third of the food we produce is lost or wasted. In industrialized countries, this amounts to roughly $680 billion. As consumers, we each waste 95-115kg of food a year.
This is a terrifying amount of food waste!
Thankfully, practices like selling unsold food at a discount are a growing trend. Maybe you’ve seen it done at your local supermarket. I routinely see soon-to-expire foods with a “now 50% off” sticker. It’s a win-win for me and the supermarket. I get cheaper food, and the store sells what they may otherwise have thrown out.
A more conscientious food ethos is emerging at airports, too.
New food waste reduction app
To help fight food waste, Munich Airport has launched a pilot project to test a new app called Too Good To Go.
The app allows users to order and pick up surplus food made by the airport’s food establishments at a discount, between 8 am and 9:30 pm.
How does it work?
The app is super easy to use. After logging on, users see a list of participating stores with appetizing offers in their area, including prices.
The app also processes orders and payments, a big plus if you are in a hurry. When an order is placed, the meal is ready for pick-up at the restaurant located within the indicated time window.
The first restaurant to join is Surf & Turf in the Munich Airport Center. It has a beach bar feel with surfboards and stool seating. They serve a variety of seafood and meat dishes and refreshing drinks.
A sustainable future for airport food
Reducing our food waste is an important route to food sustainability globally. Major travel hubs like airports can make a big difference by adopting such food waste reduction technology and programs.
Let’s be honest: airport food is expensive. I have chosen not to buy airport food on many occasions simply because the prices are too high.
Programs like Too Good To Go can help make fresh and healthy airport food options accessible to more travelers. Lower prices encourage more people to buy airport food.
With more people buying airport food and buying the food that would otherwise be thrown out, reducing our food waste becomes easier.
These programs combined with an increase in healthier food options at airports is changing the stigma of bad airport food.
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Who hasn’t arrived late at the airport and had no time to grab a bite? Or perhaps you’ve arrived in the evening as many restaurants are closing.
After all, the last thing we want to do after waiting in security lines is waiting in line to order or have food prepared. Too Good to Go lets us take advantage of surplus food that’s ready to go. Plus you can feel good about saving food that would otherwise be thrown out.
We can’t wait to see this app popping up at more airports around the world. What do you think, would you use it?
Would you buy surplus airport food at a reduced price? We absolutely would!
Let us know in the comments below. Don’t forget to tag #ITravelWell with all your airport food finds!