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“Organic waste is a resource that is not fully utilised in Denmark today through composting or anaerobic digestion.”

The ‘Systems Analysis of Organic Waste Management in Denmark’ investigates the use of a computer-based model called ORWARE (ORganic WAste REsearch) to be used as a systems analysis for household organic waste by the Danish Environmental Protection Authority. The paper notes that in Denmark approximately 1.7 million tons of household waste is collected yearly, with 700 000 tons being organic waste.

The aim was to realise the “flows, emissions and environmental impacts of handling organic household waste to get a better understanding of the consequences when increasing biological treatment of organic household waste.” However, to gain this information there the difficult situation of how to quantify data across various areas, involving the flows of material, use of resources, energy, emissions to air, water and soil. ORWARE would calculate the different flows that can help to then design tailored waste management systems for each. The analysis was conducted nationally also using two scenarios sets then analyized by six different sensitivity sets. The results show that there is positive and negative environmental impacts that vary depending on which system and impact is being considered.

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The Accor hotel chain in Dubai recently piloted a reporting tool called Winnow that provides data on the timings and specific food types going into their bins, and the approximate food costs being wasted . With access to this data the kitchen management teams have the ability to adapt food production and preparation with higher levels of consciousness and knowledge to avoid food waste loses. Since using the Winnow system for a year, the Accor hotels in Dubai have seen a 50% reduction in food waste, diverting an estimated 5.6 tonnes from landfill.

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Both of the articles shown, while discussing different areas of intervene for waste systems, highlight the need for particular wastage calculations to better understand food waste management systems from local and national levels. With this knowledge there is then  opportunities to customise those management systems for lesser environmental impacts.  

 

References
Baky, A. & Eriksson, O. 2003, ‘Systems Analysis of Organic Waste Management in Denmark’, Danish Environmental Protection Agency, pp. 1-91

Hill, J.  2017, Dubai hotels take stock of food waste, The National UAE, viewed 17 June 2017 <http://www.thenational.ae/uae/transport/dubai-hotels-take-stock-of-food-waste&gt;

Winnow: Cook Smarter 2017, The food waste challenge: why Winnow exists, viewed 17 June 2017 <http://www.winnowsolutions.com/company&gt;

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