Reporter's investigation found that the anti-food waste law has been implemented for nearly three months

"Bite of the tongue" is still common in restaurants

  □ Our reporter Wan Jing

  Recently, in a self-service hot pot restaurant in the dining area on the fifth floor of a commercial building outside Beijing’s East Fourth Ring, a customer and a waiter were blushing.

The reason is that the restaurant requires that "50 yuan is charged for every 200 grams of wasted food", and the customer threw the uneaten meat, shrimp, vegetables, etc. into the hot pot for the "CD".

"What is a waste of food? Can't tell. In the end, I can only open one eye and close one eye." The waiter shook his head, very helpless.

  According to the anti-food waste law promulgated and implemented on April 29, food waste refers to the failure to rationally use food that is safe to eat or drink in accordance with its functional purpose, including waste, reduction of food quantity or quality due to unreasonable use, etc.

  In recent years, the phenomenon of food waste in our country has been serious.

In order to promote the implementation of the Anti-Food Waste Law, five departments including the Food Safety Office of the State Council and the State Administration for Market Supervision jointly issued the "Announcement on Matters Concerning the Implementation of the Anti-Food Waste Law of the People's Republic of China" in mid-June (hereinafter referred to as the "Announcement") ), to urge producers and operators to implement anti-food waste laws and regulations, and strictly investigate and punish all types of food waste violations in accordance with the law.

  However, reporters from the Rule of Law Daily randomly visited several restaurants in Beijing recently and found that food waste is still relatively common.

Regarding the implementation of the Anti-Food Waste Law, “catering service operators take the initiative to remind consumers to prevent food waste” and other content, the implementation of the restaurants visited is also uneven.

Relevant regulations are mere formalities

The cafeteria is wasteful

  In a pizza fast food restaurant in Chaoyang, Beijing, the reporter looked around. Some tables were filled with unfinished fried rice, egg tarts, pizza, cucumber slices, etc. Some customers barely moved their chopsticks after ordering, leaving all the food left. .

The waiter pushed the garbage truck blankly and quickly dumped the leftovers into the swill bucket.

  The reporter's investigation found that the cafeteria was the "severe disaster area" where food waste occurred.

  In a cafeteria outside Beijing's Guang'anmen, customers not only pay for meals, but also pay an extra 50 yuan deposit before entering the venue.

If there is no waste after eating, the deposit will be refunded.

But such regulations often lead to disputes. Some people ask the waiter: "How can we not waste it? We haven't started eating yet, why should I give you a few hundred yuan first?" Because the other party is crowded, the waiter had to change his words: "No deposit is required, and there will be no fines for leftovers that do not reach a certain amount."

  Still in this restaurant, when the customer returns the deposit at the end of the meal, the waiter will return the deposit without checking.

The anti-waste measures formulated before are mere formalities.

  For customers' food waste, the waiters are usually good at persuading them. If the other party does not listen to them, they have no other good way.

"If you talk too much, it will lead to conflicts. We must be the ones who are arguing with customers and complained about. Therefore, the boss often asks us to do more than to do less." said a waiter at a Yunnan restaurant.

  The Anti-Food Waste Law stipulates that catering service operators should take the initiative to remind consumers to prevent food waste, post or place anti-food waste signs in conspicuous places, or provide instructions by service personnel to guide consumers to order food as needed.

However, the reporter randomly visited more than 10 restaurants and found that only one restaurant posted a slogan "Practice CD Action to Stop Food Waste", and most other restaurants posted notices such as epidemic prevention instructions and hygiene permits.

  The Anti-Food Waste Law also stipulates that catering service operators can provide public spoons and chopsticks and packaging services according to the needs of consumers.

In practice, restaurants will prepare lunch boxes only when customers ask for packaging, and they generally charge a fee.

When I heard that there was a charge, many customers were reluctant to pack it.

Takeaway orders are generally oversized

A lot of processing and transportation losses

  There is a lack of small dishes, and one with a small appetite can’t be eaten; different restaurants have different dishes. I ordered a meal based on past experience but found that there is more; in order to make up for the full reduction, I just ordered an extra dish that I didn’t need... The Food Waste Law has already put forward relevant requirements for the takeaway industry, but the reporter found that there are not many platform merchants that comply with the regulations, and the problem of excessive takeaway orders still exists.

  According to incomplete statistics, as of the end of 2020, my country’s total foreign sales orders reached 17.12 billion orders, the transaction scale of the food delivery market reached 835.2 billion yuan, and the number of food delivery users was close to 500 million.

The interviewed experts believe that the waste of take-out orders is worthy of attention.

  The "Announcement" requires food waste in the consumption model of take-out orders, and catering take-out platforms must prompt consumers to order appropriate meals and consume rationally in a significant way.

  "It is very necessary and timely to include the take-out ordering platform into the scope of anti-food waste supervision to achieve full coverage of supervision. Only catering service operators and catering take-out platforms assume more responsibility for information disclosure and prompting, and communicate efficiently with consumers. It helps consumers make reasonable judgments and better prevent food waste." said Liu Junhai, a professor at Renmin University of China Law School.

  The waste in food processing and transportation should not be underestimated.

According to data disclosed by research institutions, in the process of grain production to processing, there will be inevitable grain consumption, which is about 8%.

In other words, about 30 million tons of grain is lost every year in the production, processing, storage, transportation, and consumption links.

  To this end, the "Announcement" requires food producers and operators to fully implement anti-food waste measures, and through the implementation of food safety management systems, control key points in the production process to prevent food deterioration and reduce losses during storage and transportation.

Refine supporting system measures

Joint Safeguard CD Action

  In fact, since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, various regions and departments have taken measures such as issuing relevant documents and launching the "CD Action" to vigorously rectify waste.

  At the end of 2013, the Central Office and the State Council formulated the “Regulations on the Administration of Domestic Official Reception for Party and Government Organs” and the “Regulations for Party and Government Organs Strictly Saving and Opposing Waste”, requiring that unnecessary official receptions be effectively reduced, and the management and control of the reimbursement and settlement of reception fees shall be strengthened. Disclosure of reception information at and above the county level and strengthen accountability for reception issues.

  On April 29, 2021, the Anti-Food Waste Law was promulgated and implemented.

Since then, the ethical initiatives of strict economy and opposing food waste have become legal norms.

  In addition to the national level, some local governments are also actively exploring legislative supervision to stop food waste.

  On May 27, the "Beijing Anti-Food Waste Regulations" came into effect, clearly stating that any unit or individual has the right to discourage and stop food waste. If food producers and operators are found to have violated these regulations, they can report it through the citizen service hotline or report to relevant departments. To report, the department receiving the report shall deal with it in a timely manner in accordance with the law.

  On July 20, Sichuan Province issued the "Interim Measures for the Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Sichuan's Public Institutions' Strict Savings and Anti-Food Waste Work", which is the first time to set a benchmark for the effectiveness of public institutions' anti-food waste work.

  The interviewed experts believe that reducing food loss and waste is a systematic project, which is not an overnight effort, nor is it a matter of one person, one department. It requires all stakeholders to work together to advance.

After the anti-food waste law is promulgated, it is necessary to further refine its implementation and implementation, and to formulate supporting systems and measures, in order to truly form a healthy anti-food waste standard system.