We throw away half our food

I recently read an article posted on The Telegraph that caught my attention.  In the Western worlds, large supermarkets are filled with “fresh” products and each one of those products carries an expiration date.  What most of us don’t think about is who sets the expiration dates and how accurate are they?  Also, what happens to all the food that is produced and doesn’t appear in our markets?

bananaThe problem of wasted food is shared between poor growing and transportation of products but also with putting unnecessarily short expiration dates, offering specials to encourage shoppers to buy more than they need, and convincing shoppers not to buy foods that have even the slightest blemishes and discoloring.  This mainly pertains to perishable foods such as fruits and vegetables.

I think this is really sad that so much food is being wasted, for whatever the reason.  With so much food being produced there is no reason for anyone to go hungry.

The full article can be found at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/foodanddrinknews/9791153/We-throw-away-half-our-food.html

Home for the Holidays

The holidays is one of my favorite times of the year.  Time to gather with friends and family for lots of celebrations, eating, drinking, and so on.  When I left my home state of Michigan after collage to travel throughout the U.S., the holidays started to mean something different.  Since I wasn’t around to see everyone on a regular basis, it added to the excitement.

holiday dinnerNow, rather than living a few states away from my family, I literally live on the opposite side of the globe.  I joked with my mom that if I tried to move any farther away, I’d actually get closer!  Being away from home over the years has made me appreciate my family, my friends and my home more.  Now that I am closing in on 1 year living in another country and another culture, going home has changed for me all over again.

There are things I appreciate that I forgot or never new I did.  Things like owning/driving a car, good beer, snow, Christmas lights, open spaces, a slower pace of life, being more excited to give gifts rather than receive… and you get the idea.  There are also things I’ve begun to notice that really bothered me that I didn’t realize before.  TV shows SUCK!  I was newly reminded why I have not owned a TV for nearly a decade.  The news is depressing.  Always something about who was shot and/or killed, who ran who over, how businesses and the government are screwing the people, etc.  Where’s all the positive nice news?  Which brings me to my next comment: people were more negative and superficial than I remember.  People would get angry at the most trivial things.  I also thought my everyone I knew would be more interested to hear about my time living in Hong Kong but the top 2 questions I was asked was “How’s the weather over there” and “What is the crime rate like”?  I might get 1 other random question and then the topic would turn to (American) football or what the neighbors did yesterday.

Now that I’m back in Hong Kong, I feel like I had a bigger culture shock going home to America than I did moving here.  The feeling is hard to describe.  Ultimately, living abroad has given me many new perspectives on the world.  I think everyone should experience these perspectives at least once.  Step out of the world you know to learn something new and look back at your world from another angle.  You’ll be able to see, realize and appreciate your life in a new light.