In the town of Congrier, leftovers from the school canteen are sold to residents in the evening, at reduced prices. A great way to fight food waste.
In Congrier, in southern Mayenne, the town hall has set up a system to reduce food waste. Since September 2020, residents have been able to buy leftovers from the school canteen that have not been eaten by children at lunchtime.
Indeed, the food is resold in the only small shop in town called “O’Bistroké”, which offers leftovers at reduced prices. This action was set up by the town hall of Congrier, which reached an agreement with this trade to fight against food waste and allow residents to buy quality and inexpensive food, which was intended to be thrown away after student meals.
“Everything that is not eaten by the children in the canteen right now is thrown away. It’s fresh, it’s still consumable, it’s a shame. We offer them between 1 and 2 euros per portion because we are not allowed to give them from a legal point of view. Since the end of last week, things are going well, everything is going, and we have nothing left at the end of the day. We have a lot of veterans who come to pick it up. I think there is a mix of the desire for non-waste and the fact that it is a ridiculous cost ,” said Elisa Buisine, co-manager of the village trade.
Although there are sometimes few dishes left, especially when there are fries for lunch, the inhabitants of Congrier are delighted. Some even make reservations in the morning to ensure they get their dinner. This action makes it possible to fight against food waste because on average, between four and five kilos of food was thrown away every day in this canteen.
“It can diversify the menus for some people, because they are of high quality, for the elderly as well as for the youngest. We quantified last year the quantities wasted thanks to an intern who took care of it. Depending on the meals, it can go up to 20% or even 50% of the quantities produced which are thrown away” , specified Hervé Tison, the mayor of the town.
To further limit food waste, children must register for the canteen in the morning, to confirm their presence. Thus, the central kitchen located in Renazé can provide quantities adapted to the pupils . Older students have the right to help themselves, provided they finish their plate.