Main research report (1000 words)
The Randstad is a conurbation in the Netherlands. It consists of the four largest Dutch cities Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht, and the surrounding areas. With a population of 7,100,000 it is one of the largest conurbations in Europe, comparable in size to Milan or the San Francisco Bay Area. The Randstad covers an area of approximately 8287 km2. The cities of the Randstad more or less form a crescent or chain. This shape has given the Randstad its name (rand means rim or edge and stad means city or town). The area that is enclosed by the larger cities is called Groene Hart.
The Groene Hart (English: Green Heart) is a relatively thinly populated area in the Randstad. The Groene Hart is characterized by its rural character that contrasts with the urban areas around it. Agriculture, nature and recreation are the primary activities in the Groene Hart, where residents and urban visitors can often find rest and many green spaces. Over the last few decades, a major topic in the Randstad is the conflict between the cities and the towns in between. These towns and the surrounding countryside, known as the Groene Hart (Green Heart), are usually much greener than the cities. The publication "Randstad 2040", released by the Dutch government, tries to define the borders of this region but also tries to show how the fauna and flora scenario will change. Because of climatological effects, water in all forms will become a dominant factor that will set a new landscape in the whole of the Netherlands. This new landscape will be the result of an interaction between salt and fresh water. Rising water levels will turn the lower parts of the Randstad region into a rich and diverse landscape. The region of Polders and drained lakes will be covered by the sea, but after that will provide opportunities for new agro-production, because of the environments abounding in water. This also will change the food-chain in the Netherlands.
The term "food supply chain" means the entire process leading to the creation of a food product, from raw materials to the consumer's table. The actors involved in the food chain are therefore the farmers, the manufacturing and packaging industries, transporters, distributors, wholesalers right up to the consumer. The food supply chain is the "System" of the main activities, technologies, resources and organizations that contribute to the creation, processing, distribution, marketing and supply of a food product. The food supply chain can be defined as short or long depending on the number of subjects involved in the implementation of the final product. The food supply chain of fresh products, which do not require special processing, is often short, as agricultural production companies goes directly from production to packaging and distribution. This kind of chain supports the development of economies and local features, improves the environmental performance of companies and territory or provides greater transparency and assurance to the consumer. The chains that provide a greater number of passages and subjects of the supply chain, making the raw material processes suffer more or less articulated, are considered long. As a result, but perhaps the most active part of the food system is the waste management. For waste management is the set of politic actions to manage the entire process of waste from their production to their ultimate fate, and involve the following: the collection, transport, treatment (recycling or disposal) and also the reuse of waste materials, usually produced by human activity, in an attempt to reduce their effects on human health and on the environment.
A particular interest in recent decades regards the reducing the effects of waste on the nature and the environment and the ability to recover resources from them, and reducing the production of the waste: recycling of waste. Recycling of waste is the set of strategies to recover materials from waste for reuse rather than dispose of them. Can be recycled raw materials, semi-finished or waste materials resulting from manufacturing processes, from all kinds of communities (cities, organizations, villages, etc.), or other entities that produce waste materials that would otherwise be wasted or discarded. Recycling prevents the waste of potentially useful materials, reduces consumption of raw materials and reduces energy usage, and consequently the emission of greenhouse gases.
Recycling is more complex than disposal in landfills or incinerators where you do not replace, but that still limits its use. we talk of recycling system referring to the entire production process, and not only at the final stage, this entails:
- the production of goods, the use of biodegradable materials that facilitate "natural" disposal of the goods when the product becomes waste;
- the use of recyclable materials such as glass, metals or polymers selected, avoiding even the paired materials, the more difficult or impossible to recycle;
- separate collection of waste, crucial step of the process. In this way the separation of materials reduces the costs of reprocessing. To create a successful collection is of great importance during differentiation implemented by individual users. - the adoption of advanced techniques to recover additional recyclable materials from unsorted waste (such as mechanical-biological treatment).
Interesting are the processes that affect organic matter.
Organic waste are: vegetable scraps, kitchen scraps both raw and cooked, the shells of eggs, and green waste are: the herb branches and leaves of the gardens and public parks and private. These wastes represent a total of 27% of total waste in Europe.These materials, collected separately and subjected to a composting process can become compost. However, this process is in fact limiting, and is done more in large scale. In fact, in recent years, especially in Italy, are growing new alternative to composting.
My project starts from these points: exploiting the changes in the Randstad region, and new technologies for recycling of organic materials, my project aims to offer an alternative to traditional methods of production and recycling by creating a new food chain that doesn’t not forecast waste, or rather, where the waste of a restaurant can become "tools" to create a new dish for the next client.
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