[Letters] Delicious meal or useless trash?

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[Letters] Delicious meal or useless trash?

Korea is notorious for its huge amount of wasted food. Unlike most western people who prepare big “chunks” of food such as pizza, hamburger or sandwiches, eating rice with various side dishes is part of Korea’s culture. Since Koreans rarely finish all of the side dishes, a significant amount of leftover food is trashed every day in Korea. However, we cannot simply ignore this problem because environmental issues are more serious than ever.

The first step is to develop new recipes for food that can be made of leftovers, and then to advertise these recipes. For instance, it was once shown in television what kind of ingredients go well with ramen. However, these leftover food recipes are unknown to most people because they are not frequently shared with others. Therefore, we should not only develop new recipes, but also inform people about these recipes through documentaries or the Internet.

Education is another tool for alleviating the food waste problem. Those who were not educated to eat everything on their plate never think about why they should not waste food. However, my friends who received strict education about not throwing away food try to eat everything they can. Although these small habits seem trivial, these efforts ultimately save the environment when combined.

Korea currently implemented a new law to charge people taxes depending on the weight of their food waste. It does seem that Korea began acknowledging that the problem is something that cannot be overlooked. However, this taxing system cannot be the root solution for the problem. A fundamental solution can be achieved through active cooperation of all members of society, instead of a passive tax-paying system.

Chun Ye-ji, Gae-po High School
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