RRC News

We are Renske, Renske and Charlotte, and we write weekly blogs about what's going on in the world. Hope you enjoy!

Food Waste — 22 December 2016

Food Waste

If you combine all the food waste of Europe and the United States, you have enough food to feed all people who suffer from hunger worldwide.

Food waste is a big problem, not only in the Netherlands but in the w3dhole world. The problem has to do with awareness. Most people know how big the problem of food waste is, but think they do not play a very big role in it. The consumers are wasting the most amount of food but the restaurants and grocery stores are playing a big part in the problem as well. An estimated one third of all the food produced is never consumed. That would be 1,3 billion ton food every year which is worth around 1 trillion dollar. Every person wastes around 50 Kg of food per year which is €150 per person each year.
There are a lot of different reasons for throwing away food. In households, the most common ones are when food is past its use-by-date and leftovers are thrown away or kept but then forgotten. Other reasons for the consumer are when they prepared or cooked too much, bought too much at the store or had just forget what food was already in the house.
The biggest reason and worst problem for restaurants is when people cancel their dinner reservation last minute. In most restaurants, they cook a part of the dinner for a reservation beforehand so that in the evening it isn’t so hectic in the kitchen. When the reservation gets cancelled all that food is thrown away.
For grocery stores most food is thrown away because it is past its use-by-date or best-before-date. The stores don’t want to be accountable for whenever someone gets sick because of the food they have been selling. A big part (around 40
%) of the unsold grocery food is already donated or recycled but that doesn’t mean the problem has been solved in the grocery stores.2

Food waste is big problem not only for economic reasons (loss of money) but also for environmental reasons. Energy is needed for the production of food, so whenever food is thrown away the energy is wasted as well. Food waste itself causes big amounts of CO2 emissions which, as everyone knows, is already a big problem itself.
When we look at land usage we know the world is densely populated. One third of all the land that is used for the production of food, is used to grow food which will be wasted. In that case, we could have an extra 1.4 billion hectares of land being efficiently used.

If you look at the problem Food Waste and you look at the reasons for it and all the consequences it has, I can’t imagine anyone not agreeing with me that this has to stop. The reasons and causes for the waste of food are easily to prevent. The only thing is to do now is to make sure everyone is aware of this major problem and knows how to help stop it.

Charlotte Jansen, A4d

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Child Depression — 14 December 2016

Child Depression

Currently about 8 to 10 percent of children ages 12 to 17 are suffering from some kind ofAfbeeldingsresultaat voor child depression depression. These numbers wouldn’t be this big if children with beginning depression would get professional help immediately, but unfortunately this often isn’t the case. Parents often don’t even realise that their children are suffering from depression, they might think their kid is just suffering from one of the many side effects of puberty.

This all proves that depression with children is becoming a real social issue. And the kids aren’t even the only ones that suffer from this social problem, the parents of the children are also involved. When kids are depressed they typically don’t really show that they are. They tend to shut out anyone that wants to help them, which is not only bad for the child it is also pretty hurtful for the parents, who are only trying to help. This is exactly what makes depression with kids so hard to notice. Kids that are going through puberty often shut out the people closest to them too, so depression and puberty are often confused. So that parents don’t notice that their kid is depressed is one side of the problem, but another side is that children often don’t get professional help, even if the parents do notice the kid’s depression, they often neglect professional help because they think they can solve this ‘little’ problem by themselves. From the 2.8 million children with depression only about 60% actually seek professional help. This means 1.12 million children are walking around with depression and either nobody notices it nobody does something about it. Depression with kids is becoming even more of a social problem because the number of child suicides have gone up drastically. Many of these suicides could have been prevented if parents were more observant or didn’t neglect professional help.

There isn’t really an opinion to have on this social issue, mainly because we all agree that child depression and child suicides are problems that need to be solved. Nobody wants even more children to be depressed and commit suicide, so I obviously share that opinion, but I do have some ideas that might be able to solve this issue. First of all parents should be well informed about the symptoms of depressions with kids, many people do know the symptoms of depression with adults but those differ quite a bit from the symptoms of depression with kids. For instant adults completely lose interest in their hobbies and other activities while children still enjoy extracurricular activities when they’re depressed. Luckily I’ve been seeing more and more commercials on TV about child depression and how to spot it. Another way of solving child depression is to inform parents and the children themselves that depression is a serious illness that won’t solve itself, so maybe tell people via television or social media how important it is to seek professional help.

So everyone agrees; child depression is a real problem we should solve, one way or the other. It’s not only a big problem on its own, it’s also causing other bad problems. Don’t just hope this problem will solve itself, like so many parents hope with their children, and do something.

Renske Pouwels A4D