Blog Tag: Food

New Food Composter at DC

Posted by Peter MUIR

Within the past few weeks Discovery College has had a new food composter in the school cafeteria, and the Green Cobras – our schools environmental group – have been working to spread awareness how students can act to have the machine working to its full potential.

As land is a hot commodity in Hong Kong, there is little space for landfill, which is where all of our waste goes. Food waste is a major constituent of the solid waste in Hong Kong’s currently existing landfills. According to the HK Government’s Environmental Protection Department, in 2015 Hong Kong produced 382 tonnes of food waste daily, which amounts to about half a kilogram per person per day.  As food is highly degradable, it can easily cause odour and hygiene problems.


In addition to issues with taking up valuable landfill space, there is another important reason for keeping our food waste out of landfills.  When food and other materials sit in landfills most of the time they are not exposed to oxygen. This means that it breaks down anaerobically and methane, a greenhouse gas with the warming potential 21 times that of carbon dioxide, is produced.

By composting the food with our new machine, we are producing fertilizer that can be used in gardens, we are reducing greenhouse gas emissions and therefore our collective global footprint, and we are reducing the waste we send to landfills. It is a win-win situation!

The composter speeds up the natural decomposition rate to 24 hours. There are rotating arms inside the machine that keep the waste in motion and ensure that it is exposed to oxygen. The composter also makes use of microorganisms living inside the machine to break down the food waste. In the process the temperature of the composter is raised to 75˚C in order to eliminate all harmful bacteria. This process results in a 80-90% reduction rate of the food waste. More information on the composter can be found here.

The Green Cobras plan to use the fertiliser produced by the composter to help grow plants in the new planter boxes on level five of the school. If the plants grow well, we might even be able to eat some of our own home grown vegetables in the cafeteria! If excess fertilizer is produced, we will explore the option of selling fertilizer to the DB community and use any funds raised to go towards other initiatives to make our school as environmentally friendly as possible.

All of the DC community is encouraged to separate their food waste from their plates, cutlery and plastic wrappers so that we can use the composter to its maximum potential.

The Green Cobras meet every Friday lunchtime in room 2208. New members are more than welcome! For further enquiries contact Anne

Food Drive for World Food Day

Posted by Peter MUIR

The World Food Day Year 8 Committee is holding a food drive as a part of World Food Day (October 16).  The food collected will be distributed to the Feeding Hong Kong organisation , who will then pass it on to those in Hong Kong who have issues with accessing enough food on a daily basis.
hkhungerstatsPlease being in your donations of non-perishable food items to this worthy cause and leave them in the collection point outside of the security guard office by the school front entrance.  Donations will be collected until the 16th of October.  Click here for a list of food items to donate

Hungry for Change

Posted by Peter MUIR

Hungry for changeThe Justice Centre Hong Kong have launched a new campaign called Hungry for Change which provides students an opportunity to take action for a meaningful cause.

What is it?
Hungry for Change is a new campaign in Hong Kong, which seeks to bring about change to the way refugees must access food here. It challenges the public to eat like a refugee for three days and petitions the Hong Kong Government to allow refugees to eat in dignity. The campaign will run Tuesday-Thursday October 14-16, culminating on World Food Day (Thursday October 16).

Refugees and Food
We all have to eat. It’s a basic human need for everyone, no matter where we come from. But for refugees in Hong Kong, it’s an especially hard need to fulfill.  Refugee men, women and children flee from some of the world’s worst human rights abuses and experience things that you and I could never imagine. They often arrive in Hong Kong with nothing but the clothes on their back and, not allowed to work, they have no income of their own to help them survive.

So how do they eat? The Hong Kong Government provides them with pre-packaged bags of food, which refugees pick up every five to ten days from a shop often far from where they live. The food is said to be worth HK$40 per day, supposed to cover three meals each day and last for up to ten days. But, when we price-compare the food they receive with food for sale in supermarkets, we see that the food they get is worth much less. Often it runs out before the next pick up; sometimes it is expired; always it is limited in choice and quantity.

But it does not have to be this way, for in a city of plenty like Hong Kong, no one should have to live like this.

So, what can you do?
With Hungry for Change, you can join us in taking positive action to change this by doing a few simple and effective things. You can:

  • Take the HK$40-a-day food challenge in solidarity with Hong Kong’s refugees, to walk a few days in their shoes and help bring life to their experiences.
  • Get sponsored through this challenge and donate the money to provide food for refugees at Justice Centre Hong Kong and to support our advocacy work on refugee issues
  • Sign the petition to ask the Hong Kong Government to let refugees eat in dignity by giving them small amounts of cash to buy their own food.
  • Spread the word and use the power of social media to get friends and family involved.

We would like some senior DC students to drive this campaign at DC, and get as many people as possible to take up the challenge to support Hong Kong’s refugees. Because change only happens when we take action together. Email Mr Muir if you are interested in driving this campaign (for Yr 11 or Yr12 students only)

Be the Change. Be Hungry for Change

Save My Lunch ESF project

Posted by Peter MUIR


Project SML (“Save My Lunch”) was created by a group of ESSF students appalled by how much food waste is created in schools each day.  Through on-campus research the group identified the single lunch size options as a large contributor to this.  To address the issue, they created a campaign to inform students and lobby caterers to offer three lunch size options so as to cut down on waste without impacting the value for money students receive in the cafeterias.

Feeding Hong Kong’s Dragon Drive

Posted by Peter MUIR

Feeding Hong Kong will hold a their second annual Dragon Drive to mark this year’s Dragon Boat Festival. This year will see a fish-themed food drive to raise extra donations of nutrient packed canned and dried fish.

Who will benefit?
Feeding Hong Kong supports local welfare organisations that provide food support to those in need in our city. Their 50 plus charity partners include shelters for the homeless, migrant worker and women’s refuges, senior day centers and other non-profit programmes that provide food to the hungry. With your support, they hope to drop-off a special sea-related delivery to them this June.

Feeding HK logoWhy the fishy theme?
Seafood and seaweed are loaded with nutrients that are good for our health. Canned fish, such as sardines, mackerel and tuna, are a great source of protein, vitamin B12 and selenium. They are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids known to boost heart health and lower triglycerides. Dried seaweed, on the other hand, is an excellence source of minerals such as iodine, magnesium and calcium. It has high value of soluble fibre, which slows down the absorption of sugars and cholesterol in the body. Whilst fresh is best, canned and dried fish are shelf-stable, cost-efficient and nutrient packed – a great option for low-income families.

How can you help?
Click here for the list of our most needed food items and some special items related to the sea. Distribute the list to friends, family and colleagues and encourage them to fill a grocery bag with wholesome and nutritious foods. At the end of your food drive give Feeding Hong Kong a call to schedule a delivery to our warehouse.

DP CAS Project idea

Posted by Peter MUIR

The following details from Feeding Hong Kong gives details of an event that they are holding, one that provides a good example of what could be considered a CAS project.

Feeding Hong Kong launches the city’s first ever Pancake Day Race and would like to invite you to join us!

For the first time ever, Feeding Hong Kong, in partnership with Clifford Chance, is bringing the Pancake Day Race to Hong Kong! The event will take place on Tuesday March 4, 2014 at The University of Hong Kong campus in Pokfulam.

Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) falls between February 2 and March 9, depending on the date of Easter. In 2014, Pancake
Day falls on Tuesday March 4. In the UK, Pancake Day is traditionally celebrated by eating pancakes and running in pancake races.

This is the first race of its kind in Hong Kong. The aim is for the Pancake Day Race to become an annual fundraiser for
Feeding Hong Kong, as well as a fun way to cement relationships with our supporters.

In this madcap relay race, teams of five participants will don aprons, grab frying pans and then compete to toss their pancakes
while completing the course. The event will consist of a knockout tournament, ending in a grand final, after which the winning team will take the coveted Fastest Tossers Trophy. There will be additional prizes for Best Tossing Technique, Best Dressed Tosser and Most Entertaining Tosser. Fancy dress is not just allowed it is encouraged!

In keeping with Feeding Hong Kong’s mission of reducing the volume of food waste going to landfill, there will be onsite compost bins, for all non-eaten pancakes. This compost will then be worked back into the grounds at The University of Hong Kong, via their edible garden, ensuring zero waste.


CAS Inspiration – Natasha Suri

Posted by Peter MUIR

In 2012 16-year-old Natasha Suri gained first hand knowledge about the high volume of food that gets discarded daily by small restaurants and bakeries.   Natasha became motivated to find a way to redistribute this food to those in need, and along with her friend Siena they began to address this community need by collecting food donations from various vendors and delivering them to local shelters. As her program grew to accommodate more food donors and recipient organizations, she launched FoodSync, a crowd-mapping website that allows one to track and record food donations in real time. This youth-run food recovery organization strives to focus on programs that are often neglected, such as a homeless shelter that serves male adults that does not receive a lot of publicity or donations. Currently, FoodSync volunteers average food collections of 500+ kilos per month for redistribution to shelters and community programs and they seek to triple this goal over the coming year.

World Food Day Inter-house Food Drive

Posted by admin

WFD banner 2013Hong Kong seems like a well-off society, however there are many alarming statistics when it comes to food. Did you know that there are thousands of people in Hong Kong who do not get enough food daily?

  • 1 in 4 children do not get 3 meals a day
  • 1 in 3 seniors struggle to meet their basic nutritional needs
  • 1 in 5 people in HK live in poverty

As a part of World Food Day (October 16), a group of DC students are organizing a food drive, aiming to help some of those who face hunger daily.  The World Food Day Committee has decided to have a competitive slant on our food drive – we will hold an inter-house “competitive food drive”, in which we see which DC house makes the most donations of non-perishable food items.
The inter-house food drive will take place from Monday October 7 until Friday October 11. A box for each house will be placed at the entrance of the school. Please place your non-perishable food donations in these boxes (items such as rice, noodles, cooking oil, pasta, canned fruits – see here for more details Food Drive goods to donate.  The house with the most donations wins!

All of these non-perishable foods will then be donated to Feeding HK, who will deliver these items to those who face hunger daily.

Coming soon – World Food Day

Posted by admin

WFD banner 2013In the coming weeks, a group of Year 9 students will be hosting activities as a part of World Food Day.   An aim of these activities will be to expose DC students to some of the issues that we, as a global community, face in regards to food.  A part of these activities will be a food drive, where students will asked to bring in goods that will be, through the organisation Feeding Hong Kong, will be passed on to those in Hong Kong who have trouble in finding enough food to eat.   In the meantime, here is a clip related to the event…

CAS / C&S Idea – Fisheries Conversation

Posted by admin

Without urgent attention, we could be the last generation that catches food from the oceans.  Fish stocks around the globe are being depleted by never seen before consumption, consumption that is not sustainable.    According to Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan “the marine environment is facing challenges that, if not addressed immediately and effectively, will have profound implications for sustainable development.”

msc labelWhat could you do to address this issue as a part of your CAS / C&S programme?  Develop a plan that aims to increase awareness about the issue; educate people about their seafood-consumption habits; advocate for people to only eat seafood that comes from well-managed fisheries – such as those listed in this document from World Wildlife Fund Hong Kong – wwfhk_seafood_guide