With the always-present problem of food waste, Ramadan this year will hopefully shape up to be different.
Food waste is arguably the single most pressing issue in Ramadan, and frankly all-year-round. Arab culture, and Saudi more specifically, places a high value on honoring your guests. Most of us assume that a large spread is the way to do it. We view it as a sign of generosity. But generosity has its limits when it borders on israf (over indulgence). While some of us are content with the status quo, Khiyrat isn’t.
Khiyrat is small non-profit organization that aims to curb food waste. They are most known for gathering leftovers from individuals, restaurants, hotels and private functions and distributing them to people who need it.
Their approach can be divided into three stages:
As part of their efforts, Khiyrat visits schools around the city to educate them about food waste. They teach them ways to conserve efficiently. By doing this, they hope to educate the next generation of consumers to be mindful of their choices.
If there’s an access of food at the end of your event, who you gonna call? Khiyrat!
After they receive a request for excess food, Khiyrat sends a car to pick it up. Leftovers are then sorted and packaged into small containers. The containers are then delivered to the families that need it, or to charity fridges in neighborhoods that Khiyrat’s extensive research shows that they need it.
Not all the food Khiyrat receives is edible. Scraps and remains however do not go unused. What others consider trash Khiyrat considers fuel. They take the scraps compost it and turn it into fertilizer. Fertilizers made from natural materials are not commonly available in the Kingdom, something Khiyrat is hoping to bank on. The proceeds from the sale of this fertilizer will help fuel Khiyrat’s services in the future.
Ways to show your support:
Call them next time you have an event with excess food. Distribute smaller amounts of leftovers yourself to workers or people in need.
Remember that it’s an effort on all fronts, and required from the whole family.
Leftovers taste just as good the second day.