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Fewer Leftovers on Japanese Plates

Wednesday, February 9, 2005 Posted: 11:10 AM JST

The Asahi reports today that Japanese eaters clean their plates better when eating out. They hardly leave "a scrap untouched on dishes", a survey by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries shows.

Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries staff visited 100 restaurants all over Japan as part of a research program to develop less wasteful meals. They discovered that the amount of uneaten food after meals was 0.3 percent less than the year before. The project focused on eateries in 11 large cities, including, Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka and Fukuoka, during September and October 2004. They weighed leftovers for 5,193 meals.

According to the Jan. 26 report, an average 19.4 grams of food per serving were cleared from tables and thrown out in 2004. That's 3.3 percent of the average-sized restaurant lunch-581.7 grams. The highest rate of leftovers was in Japanese-style restaurants: 4.6 percent. Especially pickled vegetables are unpopular. No less than 13.8 percent is left untouched, followed by vegetables in sauce at 13 percent.

Western-style restaurants ranked second in terms of food waste at 3.3 percent. Chinese restaurants came in third at 3.2 percent. At so called "Asian cuisine restaurants'' customers only left 2.5 percent of food uneaten.

"It is possible that this is an effect of the lingering recession,'' a ministry official was quoted by Asahi. "More and more people are becoming conscious of not wasting their food.''

Keywords: national_news trends_lifestyle culture_news

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1 comments so far post your own

1 | At 11:41pm on Mar 29 2005, Angie wrote:
This is true. I used to work at a oriental restaurant. When asian (japanese, chinese, korean) customers came in, they always finished all bites on their plates before returning to the buffet, in comparison to the rest of the white and mexican customers, who most often left half plates of food before returning to the buffet. I didn't like cleaning up after the "un-oriental" customers ;)
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