Transition in eating practices and its addiction to food

A short history on eating

Around 300,000 years ago, homo sapiens were named as the first human species, though distinct from what we would refer to as humans today or according to Charles Darwin (treaties on evolution), 200,000 years ago. Although different, both had something in common. They hunted and gathered and as hunting and gathering was limited to time and space and therefore the resources time and space provided, so did both depend on relocation.

The benefit of changing locations where that different nutrients were obtained and digested. Most nutrients were fresh and they supported the variety of minerals and vitamines needed -(ideally of course) and not limited to what “tasted good” today. They moved, they rationed and they likely were concious of what they had. They were very likely aware of what it meant to be hungry or not.

What do we eat today?

Today food is constantly available in variances per single food category (think about how many types of apples exist), the different types of pasta, other grains and all sorts of cheeses up to cereals, marmelades and other diary products. They come in different flavours, from different origins, they are vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, sugar free. They are pre-cooked and not. They come with sauces (how does the actual food taste if not for preservates? Would I even like it?). They come without, sometimes with toppings, sometimes with chemical flavours and or they may be called food but aren’t (using flavored wood-chips to replace strawberries). They may be organic, they may be not or they may be a mix of it. That is what we eat.

Why do we buy food?

Unlike the homo sapiens, we do not have to hunt and gather for food. Food is available, because it is. Hereby I am talking particular about any place/country/region, where there is a surplus of food. It means more food is available then is or can be consumed or is needed. The more choices, the more difficult to decide what to consume. The more choices the higher the discrepancy between why we eat and what we want to eat. Do we buy because we are hungry? Do we buy because we want to eat? Do we buy because it looks nice to eat? How does this affect the availability or production of more food (choices)?

Ever thought about what role design plays in food consumption? Are fridges too large? Do fridges need to be full of food or is less food full enough? Do we feel we have too less because the fridge is not full enough? How much full is full enough?

When do we eat?

It feels as if we are eating almost all the time, snacks, small meals, large meals. There are small meals at work, small snacks on the way home. Individual snacks for rewards, snack rewards on a trip to the play ground, meals on a hike, snacks on a hike. Snacks infront of Netflix, snacks in the movies, snacks for the day of, large meals for festivities, buffets, more snacks for holidays, meals because the “clock” says so, meals because its a tradition, all-you-can eat restaurants, too much food as a sign for wealth, certain types of meals because its always been eaten a certain way, in a certain style, in a certain fashion, a certain type of food. When are we hungry?

When a movie in itself is already stimulation, do we need more stimulation i.e. food? Although, the stimulation of food tends to be limited to the time eaten.

When are we hungry?

This morning, when I woke up, I was not hungry. Yesterday, after one hour kick-boxing I was not hungry. Playing one hour on a play-ground with a child, I was not hungry, neither was the child as we just ate a meal; But it “wanted something to eat.” I was hungry 2 hours after. Then I got really hungry, but I knew I was hungry. I felt it because my stomach said so, I could not focus well and I felt it was time. I ate. I am not hungry, when I procrastinate and therefore eat. I am not hungry, when I am not happy with writing but eat to get a reward or to avoid. I am not hungry, when I look for an external stimulu, when the stimulu has to be found internal. And where there is no stimulu, I have to find out why. What feeling am I trying to compensate with food?

Is there enough time to cook “real” when hungry?

We work, hours, days, weeks and months. Some work more, some work less hours. Some volunteer, some are full-time parent, some are not. Some have more time, some have less time to cook – when they are about to get hungry and when they are hungry. Cooking hungry is no fun. Cooking something healthy (in terms of meals that require longer preperation), something fresh when being hungry could be annoying, frustrating, time-consuming, senseless, sad, whatever, especially if the work-hours are long, children and ourselves have to be taken care of. It makes a pre-cooked meal, a wood-chip joghurt, fast food, a bag of chips, whatever goes fast appealing. Could that be changed if we had more time?

Sometimes we talk about packaging waste. It’s about why this sort of waste occurs also. Can we work less and invest more time in ourselves [cooking, friends, hobbies, families?). Does this reduce waste and stress, fast-related eating?

Sustainable transition in food practices?

I would argue it is systemic. Its about having more time and about being aware when a feeling is substituted with food as oppose to when food is a need “to be hungry”. At the same time there is too much food, including too many food choices, and too little food in terms of healthy quality. There may also be the lacking time to cook healthy, or pleasure might be looked at somewhere different. Cooking for example is also work.


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Untapping the value of bio-based waste in Asia

Article featured in : 5th Edition Circular Asia Magazine

South-East-Asia (SEA) is noted for several plantation cash crops, of which the most important are tea, rubber, palm oil, coconuts, and sugarcane. Besides these, SEA is also home to many fruit trees and fruit bearing shrubs that are productive throughout the year. Some of the fruits most familiar to us and available for direct consumption are jackfruit, dragon fruit, banana and mango

We quickly notice that many of these fruits are covered with a protective layer such as the peal of a banana or the hard shell of coconuts. Once the flash is consumed, the protective layer is often disposed, accummulates in a landfill-mix or is being burned. The consequene is that the burning and the accumulation of bio-waste contributes to an increase of GHGs emissions either in the form of methane through organic breakdown or carbon dioxide through burning.

Bio-based waste can be profitable

Many of us, including farmers and consumers, are used to this type of linear production, consumption and disposal. But, with the circular economy, we can go one step further by creating value from organic waste. In doing so, we can provide environmental benefits, but most of all create multiple employment opportunities with carbon friendly products. The uses of these products are versatile and with this issue, we would like to begin with providing entrepreneurial incentives for two organic waste products.


Banana is counted as one of the most important global food crop and is currently cultivated in around 129 different countries, with India contributing approximately 15% of the total fruit production worldwide. Banana fibre is produced from the ‘pseudo stem’ of the banana plant, which would usually be burnt or left to rot (apart from a small amount that is fed to cattle) (Mavulo, 2018).

Turning banana waste into profit

Instead of letting it rot, one one oft the world’s strongest natural fibres known as musa fibre (banana fibres) can be produced from it. The natural fibre is made from the stem of the banana tree and consists of thick-walled cell tissue, bonded together by natural gums and mainly composed of cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin. Banana fibre can be used to make a number of different textiles with different weights and thicknesses, based on what part of the banana stem the fibre was extracted from (Hendriskz, 2017). Of course, other products can be produced from it as well such as paper and rope.


Although dragon fruit is not included in the most consumed fruits or the highest produced  fruit,  the  cultivation of dragon fruit  is increasing. As people consume largely the flesh of the fruit, the amount of dragon fruit peel waste increases likewise. In Indonesia dragon fruit peel waste contributes to the 40% organic waste out of 200 tonnes of annual waste (Putri et al. 2018).

Turning dragon-fruit waste into profit

One of the most beautiful things about the dragon fruit is its color. Dragon fruit peel provides natural red color produced by pigment called anthocyanin which can be used as a subtituent from synthetic dyes to natural dyes (Sudarmi, Subagyo, Susanti and Wahyuningsih, 2015).  Because of that it has been identified as a potential source of red-purple colour with a moderate antioxidant activity for food and cosmetic decorations. Its ecological origin is meeting an economical perspective and consumers’ preference for green products as well.

Why natural dye?

  • They have a minimal environmental Impact – Because they come    from natural sources, natural dyes are not harmful to the environment, which makes it so appealing for consumers.
  • Renewable – Natural dyes are obtained from renewable sources that can be harnessed without imposing harm to the environment or simply our foods, clothes and hair 😊 (Keycolors, 2020)

Bio-waste can help us untap full environmental and economic potential in Asia.

With a growing population and more people to feed, the demand for food increases rapidly, but so does waste. Each plant and each organic material has unique featurest hat can be used and tranformed into value. In doing so, we do not only provide  enivronmental benefits, but we can also create circular employment starting on  the farmer level and rural regions.

                                               We are looking for you!

Are you an entrepreneur who already engages or produces products from bio-waste? Then, we would love to hear from you and feature you in our next magazine!


Hendriskz, V. (2017). Sustainable Textile Innovations: Banana Fibres. FashionUnited. Retrieved from:

KEYCOLORS (2020). Advantages and Disadvantages of Natural DYES. Retrieved from:

Mavolu (2018). From Waste to Value: Banana Fibre for Fashion and Textiles. Retrieved from:

Putri, C. H., Janica, L., Jannah, M., Ariana, P. P., Tansy, R. V., & Wardhana, Y. R. (2018). Utilization of Dragon Fruit Peel Waste as Microbial Growth Media. The 10th Conference of Indonesian Student Association in South Korea, At University of Science and Technology, Daejeon

Sudarmi, S., Subagyo, P., Susanti, A., & Wahyuningsih, A. S. (2015). Simple Extraction of Dragon Fruit (Hylocereus polyrhizus) Peel as Natural Dye Colorant. Eksergi12(1), 05-07.