Restaurants all around the globe strive to create an image of fine dining and exquisite service. But going against the standard practice, a few restaurants are gradually taking a strong stand against rampant food wastage that occurs in eateries.
Food wastage is quite common in restaurants. While patrons often order more than they should, even the regular portions are left uneaten. Traditionally, such places have had little say, besides putting up placards pleading customers not to waste food. But such signs have had little impact.
Now a French restaurant, as well as a Japanese seafood eatery, have decided to take a tough stand to curb the wasteful practice. French restaurant Patrizietta, in Losone in the canton of Ticino, levies a fine if the meals are not completely finished. According to the 20 Minutes Newspaper, waiters are advised to be watchful of the orders and consumption. Those patrons who indulge in food wastage, or do not complete the meal ordered, find an inflated bill. Restaurateur Giovanni Tafuro adds 5 francs to the bill and, when confronted, explains the extra amount with a polite but stern sermon.
Giovanni Tafuro, who took over in April, became acutely aware of the copious amount of food being rampantly and thoughtlessly wasted through the lunchtime buffet, reported The Local. He ultimately felt it was his moral obligation to do something about it. Shared the restaurateur, “I wanted to send a strong signal. It made me sick to see so much food being thrown out.”
He has however confirmed that the money isn’t meant to boost the bottom line, “The five-franc fine was symbolic, and he mainly wanted to raise awareness about the problem.” The customers aren’t surprised with a fine if they waste their food. The restaurant does have visible notices forewarning patrons of the consequences if they waste food, reported The Hindu.
A similar technique and stand has been taken by Hachikyo seafood restaurant in Sapporo, Japan. However, the fine is restricted to just one exclusive dish: Tsukko Meshi, a local delicacy that consists of a liberal amount of salmon roe piled on top of a bed of rice. Patrons who dare to order this food item are cautioned about the conditions and, in case they do not finish the dish, a fine of almost $20 awaits them.
The restaurant does have a compelling reason: While we could all do well to value our food a little more, dishing out a little extra money for every bite we waste may help us to appreciate what fuels our bodies and excites our palates, reported Inhabitat.
Interestingly, besides sending a well-intended message, the eatery does have a commercial reason behind the technique as well. Tsukko Meshi is not only delicious, but also very difficult to obtain. According to an explanation on the Hachikyo menu, harvesting the salmon roe comes at great expense to the fishermen who risk their lives for the sake of cuisine. Therefore, anyone who fails to eat the entire bowl must give a “donation.”
Apparently both these restaurants strongly feel, unless financially burdened, patrons won’t stop wasting food. Are they right?
[Images via Bing]