Fashion Week Spring 2018 – Food: Policies & Innovations gathered, for the first time in Croatia, the representatives of the European parliament, Croatian government, the civil sector, scientific community, media, architecture and activism in a two-day discussion on the growing economic, ecological, social and urban problem of Europe – food waste, donation and production. Organizers of the conference are European Capital of Culture Rijeka 2020, Center for Culture of Dialogue (CeKaDe), Food Network and CAS SEE.
The problem of rising food waste and insufficient food donations entered the Croatian media space with the removal of VAT on food donations in 2015. However, the change in the state of affairs has not been substantial enough.
Among the numerous conclusions of this spring’s Fashion Week are also the following:
- It is necessary to establish a cooperation between civil society organizations and state entities for the purposes of dismantling legislative, logistical and administrative problems with regards to food donating
- It is necessary to push for long-term education of donors and communication among intermediaries with regards to food donation and food waste, but also for possibilities of upgrading their operations
- It is necessary to reduce food waste at every phase in the food distribution chain
- It is necessary to educate citizens on the imprecision of “best before” signs on food and push for governmental responsibility to offer recommendations as to how long after the “best before” date can the food be regarded as available for consumption
- It is advisable to create bold plans for urban food production in order to allow for the production of sufficient amount of quality food for the needs of the citizens (and Rijeka’s abandoned port areas offer a compelling site for reinvention for such purposes)