A successful SavingFood Festival in Greece

A successful SavingFood Festival in Greece

The SavingFood Festival took place on Saturday 3rd of March at the Impact Hub in Athens and it was organized by the SavingFood Project, Boroume, WWF Greece and Impact Hub Athens.

The objective of the event was to sensitise the general public, adults and children, about food waste and its serious impact on society, the environment and economy.

Moreover, since food waste occurs throughout the food supply chain (“farm-to-fork”), we aimed to get the message across that we are all concerned, but we can all be part of the solution. To that end, a focal point was to present how easy it is for us all to contribute towards reducing food waste, starting at the household level.

Finally, we aimed at engaging citizens in food saving activities through inter alia an actual food rescue & redistribution collective endeavour in a festive and convivial atmosphere. The choices made in relation to the content of the activities intended to serve the objective of clearly and effectively communicating high impact messages able to affect and engage a broad audience.

Two farmers’ market food saving activities were organised prior to the event (in the framework of our “Boroume at the farmers’ market” programme), whereby our teams of volunteers saved and collected surplus fruits and vegetables that producers had not been able to sell at the market.

The festival programme consisted of the following activities:

“Food saving heroes” (Activities for kids)

Interactive narration (with improvisation and play) of a book, inspired by the work of the Boroume team and its saving & offering food model, by its writers.

Educational activities for children were proposed by both Boroume and WWF Greece regarding the issues of food waste, volunteering, solidarity, and environmental protection.

Cooking with leftovers

Cooking demonstrations by well-known food bloggers, using as main ingredients food products that are often wasted at the household level. They also shared with the public many ideas about turning leftovers into tasty and nutritious meals, and tips on how to best preserve food and extend its life.

Photo exhibition and “Doculinaries”

Photo gallery of food waste related pictures and projections of videos and animations about food waste and how to prevent it.

Info points

Our volunteers provided information about the work of Boroume and the SavingFood project and distributed relevant dissemination material.

Disco soup party

A group of volunteers (in rotation) prepared salads from leftover fruits and vegetables (sourced from farmers’ markets), under the coordination of two well-known chefs.

The salads were first offered to attendees, in order they “see for themselves” how tasty and nutritious these food products are, that would have otherwise been wasted. Moreover, salads were prepared to be offered to two social soup kitchens.

Participants had thus the opportunity to actively contribute in a collective food rescue and redistribution activity.

It should be noted that, in addition to volunteers that had expressed their interest beforehand, also attendees were encouraged to take part.

Moreover, the Chefs by use of microphones, referred to figures about food waste at EU and global level and its impact, addressed the public and gave tips about how to save food at home, urged them to participate in the disco soup and more broadly in food saving & offering activities.

“Say cheese”

Photo booth: attendees had the opportunity to have pictures of them holding “imperfect” fruits and vegetables (and also share them via social media).

Workshop on “sustainable food systems”

WWF Greece assisted us in designing the awareness raising activities and provided informative material for the photo gallery, the video projections, and the info stands. They participated in a farmers’ market food saving activity for sourcing surplus food, and they held their educational programme addressed to children during the festival.

Overall, people at the event showed great interest to get informed about the food waste problem, and about food rescue & redistribution through Boroume and SavingFood. They were also keen to receive the dissemination material and find out more through the websites and newsletter of Boroume and SavingFood.

The experience has been rewarding for all participants, according to the feedback they have provided. New volunteers that participated in the activities leading to and in the event itself expressed their interest to be kept informed about our activities.

More than 600 people attended the event and 350 food portions were offered to two social soup kitchens in the centre of Athens supporting homeless people and other vulnerable groups, in addition to food offered to attendees.