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ActionAid study finds most water wasted in showers in Dhaka

  • Published at 09:50 pm November 13th, 2019
Speakers during a study sharing programme at a Dhaka hotel on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 Mahmud Hossian Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Among the participants, 843 or 56.2% were male, while 657 or 43.8% were female

Most of the water waste is believed to have been taking place in Dhaka city during bathing and regular showers. 

According to a survey research styled: ‘Food consumption behaviour,’ showed that a majority of respondents or participants of the survey concluded that most of the water waste occurs during showers.

The study was a 4-week extensive survey among 1,500 participants in Bashundhara, Uttara and Mohammadpur, Dhanmondi, Gulshan, Banani, Baridhara and Old Dhaka neighbouhoods.

Among the participants, 843 or 56.2% were male, while 657 or 43.8% were female. 

ActionAid Bangladesh, a global movement of people working together to advance human rights and defeat poverty, recently carried out the research. 

The objective of this research was to understand the food consumption behaviour, shifting trends of food consumption patterns, expenditure analysis on food consumption, wastage in food consumption, sources and propensity. 

The survey shows that the number of food consumers are increasing fast.  Food waste happens mostly in wedding parties, in eateries and restaurants as consumption pattern suggests increasing trends of eating-out on the back of a growing middle class and urbanization in the country, while water waste is reported during washing clothes and taking showers.

Among the respondents, 91% aged between 15-24 acknowledged that there has been an increasing pattern among younger people to eating out. 

Speakers told reporters that over the past several years, people have increasingly started eating out. A decade ago, Bangla, Chinese, and local fast food were popular destinations while eating out. Now the trend has shifted and expanded to a more diverse and international standard of food explorations and tea-coffee culture among the youth.

Among the respondents, 44% acknowledged their interest in fast food. Whereas 27% preferred Chinese food, 14% Indian cuisine, 7% Thai, 4% Italian and 3% Japanese.

50% of respondents said that they visit restaurants 2-4 times a month while 59% of respondents spend less than Tk3000 per month while 26% spend Tk3000-Tk4000, 9% spend Tk5000-Tk6000 and 6% spend more than Tk7000 per month to eat out.

88% people drink mineral water during eating out while 80% said that if any water is left in the bottle they retain the bottle to drink water sometime later. 

52% of the respondents expressed their concern over food waste mostly taking place during wedding programs while 30% in restaurants and 16% at home.

Among 815 respondents, 92% admitted that they are aware of the health effects of overeating, while 71% respondents said that they have suffered due to overeating.

Dr S M Manjurul Hannan Khan, additional secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, said that family education and awareness campaigns are needed to prevent food waste.

He said: “Food packaging and use of plastic are polluting  the environment and there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans and seas by the year 2050.”

He said that the government is planning to search for a better alternative of plastic in addition to the plastic ban.

Richard Ragan, Bangladesh representative of the World Food Programme, said that eating out has become a fashion and a form of entertainment.

He said: “Our food consumption habits has changed due to rapid globalization and the amount of food wastages are increasing day by day.”

Farah Kabir, country director of ActionAid Bangladesh, also spoke at the study sharing program.