Wanted: Young designers to tackle food waste

Campaigns and Advocacy, GROW, Media Releases, News article written on the 23 Jan 2013

Young people can help reduce the $8 billion worth of edible food that goes to waste in Australia each year by sharing their skills and ideas through a new online platform, launched today.

Oxfam Australia’s new Design for Change platform will enable young people to upload their innovative design, marketing and communications solutions to the causes of food waste.

The site also will link them to other emerging and established professionals and give them the chance to win prizes including professional workshops.

Oxfam Australia’s Design for Change Coordinator Sophie Weldon said she hoped the opportunities created by the platform would get people fired up about a massive problem.

“Almost a third of food produced for human consumption around the world is thrown away or wasted, which puts immense pressure on our food system,” Ms Weldon said.

“There is enough food to feed the world, yet one in eight people on the planet goes to bed hungry each night.  New South Wales households alone throw away more than $2.5 billion worth of food each year.”

According to Ms Weldon, the best ideas submitted on the platform would be selected for publication in an e-book and distributed to organisations working on reducing food waste in Australia, to help inspire other young people to contribute to creating a sustainable food future.

The Design for Change platform will make the links to food waste around the world and connect young people to Oxfam’s GROW campaign that aims to ensure everyone in the world has enough to eat.  

The online platform was co-designed with the creative agency Digital Eskimo, and received funding from the NSW Government’s ‘Love Food Hate Waste’ grants program.

Ms Weldon said ideas that could be shared through the platform included poster campaigns to change the public understanding of food waste, and designs showing people how to make the most of leftovers.

Ms Weldon said the six-week food waste design challenge was the first of a series of issues to be tackled throughout the year, inviting people to share ideas and solutions to local and global problems, as well as connecting them to others in their industry who wanted to use their creative skills to make a difference.

“Effective design, marketing and communication strategies have the ability to transform the way people think,” she said. 

“This collaborative space aims to tap into the power of the creative community to create positive change on a local, national and even global level.”

Oxfam Australia has been running a Design for Change program in universities since 2007. 

Go to designforchange.org.au

For interviews or more information contact Laurelle Keough on 0425 701 801 or laurellek@oxfam.org.au