New Delhi: Irked by huge food wastage at social gatherings, Food and Consumer Affairs Minister KV Thomas on Thursday said that the government should take a lead and set an example to cut food wastage at its own functions.
"We have heard there is some wastage of food at functions/events organised by the government and PSUs. Apart from launching awareness campaign, the government itself must come out with austerity measures," Thomas told reporters after
the first meeting of the panel set up to suggest ways to address food wastage at social events.
The panel is of the view that the government must set an example for others by adopting austerity measures at its own functions, he said.
At present, there is no scientific survey on food wastage at social events. So, the panel has suggested that the Indian Institute of Public Administration should conduct a survey to know the actual size of food wastage, Thomas said.
He, however, ruled out any "legislative or administrative measures" to curb this problem as he felt it may lead to misuse.
The 14-member panel headed by Consumer Affairs Secretary Rajiv Aggarwal today deliberated and suggested ways to check food wastage at weddings, big hotels and other social events.
The public awareness campaign through `Jago Grahak Jago` and creation of consumer clubs in schools, colleges, NGOs and village panchayats and school curriculum are other suggestions made by the panel, the minister said.
The expert panel also suggested use of surplus food in five star hotels for charity and adoption of `Gurudwara model` to curb food wastage, he added.
According to reports, about 15-20 percent of food gets
wasted at social gatherings in the country.