Recipe for Disaster: The United Nations World Food Programme launches a global challenge to reduce food waste

Published on 11 April 2018

LONDON -  Open your fridge, grab the ingredients closest to their use-by date and create a recipe from food that would otherwise go to waste. This is the challenge set by The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and creative agency Anomaly. 

The campaign, Recipe for Disaster, developed by Adam Burns and Paco Lopez at Anomaly, aims to raise awareness and money for hungry people by asking the general public to be more conscious of their food waste – one of the fundamental steps towards eradicating global hunger. 
 
Whilst there is enough food in the world to feed everyone, one third of the 4 billion metric tonnes of food we produce each year is wasted, costing the global economy nearly US$750 billion annually. At the same time, ongoing conflicts are forcing more people to flee their homes than at any time since the Second World War, making it difficult for affected people to grow their own food or buy food at a reasonable price. 
 
"If we can tackle the problem of food waste, we could feed 9 billion people every day,” said Corinne Woods, Director of Communications for the World Food Programme. “In developing countries the majority of food is wasted in storage and production, which WFP is helping to address with new technologies and community education. However, in the developed world most food is lost on the plate. Recipe for Disaster aims to confront this issue and get people to take action by creating a meal and making a donation."
 
In the UK, professional chef Arthur Potts Dawson will be hosting a launch dinner for the campaign at Omved Gardens, using food that would ordinarily go to waste.  
 
Arthur Potts Dawson reflects; “Food waste is one of the biggest issues of our time and chefs are in a position to drive behavioural change and offer practical tips on how to use up food nearing its expiration. It is also important to remember that food is often wasted before it even reaches the consumer – so if it does make it into our households and on to our plates, then we have a responsibility to do our best to use it wisely.”
 
The Recipe for Disaster launch also coincides with the premiere of a new FUSION documentary series “Food Exposed” (#FoodExposed) hosted by Nelufar Hedayat. In the first installment of the series, which will support the Recipe for Disaster campaign, Nelufar talks to Nicole Richie as part of an in-depth look at the impact of food waste globally.
 
A recent UK study revealed that social media is fuelling food waste. Findings suggest that time-poor millennials do not understand the value of the food on their plate and are often more preoccupied by the visual presentation of food for social media, meaning they are less likely to plan meals and more likely to buy too much food, which then gets thrown away.
 
“We decided to create this campaign to attempt to turn social media’s negative influence on food waste into a more positive force,” said Adam from Anomaly and co-creator of the campaign. “I remember being told to finish my dinner when I was a child because there were others in need of that food – and there is so much truth in that. This campaign aims to create tangible actions that support those without enough to eat, whilst showing that what we waste here does have an impact on global hunger.”
 
Creating your own Recipe for Disaster is simple: 
 
1. Open your fridge and grab any ingredients that are close to their use by date
2. Create a meal using those ingredients (and any others you may need to create your dish)
3. Get your phone out and start snapping
4. Share your picture or video via social media using the hashtag #RecipeforDisaster and tagging three friends to create their own
5. Make a £5 donation to the World Food Programme 
 
Arthur Potts Dawson has some ideas for using up commonly wasted foods (attached).
 
For more information visit www.wfp.org/recipefordisaster  
Please note this hyperlink will be activated nearer the campaign launch date.
 
 
For more information, please contact:
Sarah Hogg, Senior Account Manager, Common Industry | sarah@commonindustry.co.uk | +44 7940 281 470
Francis Mwanza, Head of WFP, London Office | francis.mwanza@wfp.org |  +44 20 3857 7411
 
About the UN World Food Programme:
 
Assisting 80 million people in around 80 countries each year, the World Food Programme (WFP) is the leading humanitarian organization fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience.
 
On any given day, WFP has 5,000 trucks, 20 ships and 70 planes on the move, delivering food and other assistance to those in most need. Every year, we distribute approximately 12.6 billion food rations to those most in need. These numbers lie at the root of WFP’s unparalleled reputation as an emergency responder, one that gets the job done quickly at scale in the most difficult environments.
Follow us on Twitter @wfp @wfp_media
 
About Anomaly - Ad Age’s 2017 Agency of The Year:
 
Founded just over 12 years ago, Anomaly is a difficult to define, but exciting to work at 'new model' agency. Driven by a passionate and entrepreneurial culture encompassing a diverse, elastic set of skills, Anomaly has offices in Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, London, Amsterdam, Berlin and Shanghai. Clients include: Anheuser-Busch InBev, Converse, Diageo, Google, Hershey’s, IKEA, LEGO, MINI, Nike, Sally Hansen and The Coca-Cola Company. 
 
Anomaly has been recognized for a very wide range of work and IP, covering both effectiveness and craft excellence including: Ad Age’s 2017 Agency of the Year, Cannes Lions, Effies, Fast Company’s Most Innovative, Jay Chiat, Digiday Awards and the Mashies -- among the usual suspects.  Anomaly has also been honored with a few less conventional accolades as well, such as being named one of Time Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2016 for hmbldt, Toy of The Year for Mighty Jaxx, plus two Emmys for cooking television series Avec Eric, all of which the agency created and co-owns. 
 
www.anomaly.com/
 
About Arthur Potts Dawson:
 
Arthur Potts Dawson has been cooking for over 30 years, starting his career as a chef in 1987 with a three year apprenticeship with the Roux brothers. Since then, he has worked at Kensington Place, as head chef at the River Café and alongside Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall and Pierre Khoffman. He restyled Petersham Nurseries kitchen, led the re-launch of Cecconi's restaurant for the Soho House group, and worked as executive head chef for Jamie Oliver's Fifteen Restaurant and Piccadilly Diner. His two Restaurants Acorn House and Water House Restaurant have won numerous awards for excellent food and sustainable practises and Arthur’s concept, The People’s Supermarket, is constantly challenging the food industry to look at our food systems for a more sustainable and food secure future. 
 
Arthur is an advocate for sustainable food production and often speaks on issues relating to global hunger in his role supporting the UN World Food Programme.
 
Arthur has appeared on television shows The People’s Supermarket and Fish Fight for Channel 4, with weekly slots on Market kitchen and Saturday cooks. Arthur has also worked on shows for the BBC Radio 4 food programme. He also writes for the Guardian food and travel section. Alongside all of this, Arthur also consults on large scale sustainable food innovation with Ikea Food, The Fazer Group and Unilever.