Sustainable living is a hot topic at the moment, and rightly so. Wasted food in particular has a large impact on society’s hip pocket and the environment. To mark World Environment Day, residents were invited to ignite their sustainable minds and rethink how they do food and reap the rewards on Saturday, June 1, when Frankston Arts Centre hosted Matthew Evans, the presenter of SBS’s popular food program Gourmet Farmer, at the Food for Thought Mini Fair.
Frankston Mayor Michael O’Reilly said the Gourmet Farmer host was an awesome drawcard at this year’s event. “Wasted food has a big impact on your hip pocket and the environment,” Cr O’Reilly said. “There’s never been a better time to learn about why reducing food waste matters and what we can each do about it.”
Matthew warmed up the crowd with tips on creating tasty meals that not only are good for you, but are also great for the environment. Matthew has written 11 books on food and is an impassioned supporter for sustainable food production. Having been a chef and food critic, he now lives and works on Fat Pig Farm in Tasmania’s Huon Valley, where he hosts farm-to-table restaurant meals. Matthew’s free cooking demonstration was a well-attended event at 10am, with everyone hanging around for the mini fair that ran from 11am-1pm. Food and drinks were available at the bar, and visitors were encouraged to bring their Keep Cup if they had one.
“Around 40 per cent of the average household garbage bin is avoidable food waste,” Cr O’Reilly said. “This is food that was bought and prepared with the intention of being eaten, but wasn’t consumed — what a waste. When food is thrown in the bin it’s sent to landfill. Because of the way food waste breaks down in landfill, it can create methane, a greenhouse gas, which contributes to climate change.”
A variety of stalls showcasing smart new ideas and old-school solutions to avoid and reduce all kinds of waste were on show at the mini fair. The ideas ranged from modern cloth nappies, Boomerang Bags, composting and worm farming information to recipes, handy hints, and demonstrations on making beeswax wraps. Also at the event were council officers ready to answer any recycling questions that arose and advise on the council’s waste management services.