Hack4Climate Hackathon: Food Waste

Thirty-three young people from all over Slovenia, aged 16–24, were faced with the challenge to reduce food waste in their households. Data from the Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia showing that we produced some 68 kg of food waste per capita in 2018 provided a strong motivation for the participants.

The planet is on an important mission right now – if we want the Earth to breathe from the bottom of its lungs again, we need to help it. The eight-year LIFE IP CARE4CLIMATE project brings together 15 partners, each working in their own field to raise awareness about the changes we can make as individuals for a better tomorrow. The ten registered groups had different mentors available at all times: Lara Habič from the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning of the Republic of Slovenia, chef Luka Jezeršek, Tina Cipot, Head of Communications at Lidl Slovenia, Eva Tisaj Žnidaršič, founder of DragonHack, Slovenia’s largest student hackathon, and Mojca Korošec and Ilja Gasan Osojnik Črnivec from the Biotechnical Faculty.

“It means a lot to us, especially to be together and to work with so many people. We’re having a great time and it feels good to be able to address something bigger than our personal problems,” said Keti, one of the participants.

The participants had 24 hours to come up with a solution that could reduce household food waste; they then presented their ideas to the expert jury. The expert jury, composed of Lara Habič, Aleš Kuhar, Mojca Korošec and Tina Cipot, decided that the winning idea was the solution proposed by the Ecolance group, which focused on food consumption in student dormitory households. The FoodHub idea, proposing a community cupboard or fridge where students could put food that they could not use for various reasons, was considered by the jury to be the easiest to adopt and, above all, feasible today.

The winning team received a two-day survival course run by the Bushcraft & Survival School from Kočevje, and €130 of Lidl value cards were donated to the Pod Strehco Institute.

The runner-up team Naš Dragi Planet, which presented the idea of two portion sizes for student vouchers, was very close to the consumer, according to the jury. The team will be rewarded with a culinary treat at Gostilna na Gradu run by Gostinstvo Jezeršek.

The third-placed team, called Palačinke, presented a technological idea using a blue light and an ioniser. These would be built into existing fridges to extend the shelf life of food. The expert jury judged that the idea still needed some testing but that it was a very good one and could be implemented at some point. The team members received €40 worth of Lidl Slovenia vouchers as a prize.

A special prize and an honourable mention was awarded to the Jurij Vega team: in the jury’s opinion, they outdid all others in some respects. The team well understood so-called user pain, personification, as well as the community. Lidl Slovenia therefore rewarded each member with a voucher worth €20.

We would like to thank all our partners: the lead partner of the LIFE IP Care4Climate project, the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning of the Republic of Slovenia, Lidl Slovenia, Gostinstvo Jezeršek, the Biotechnical Faculty, IKEA Slovenia, EIT FOOD Slovenia, the Ljubljana Castle team, who gave us a roof over our heads for two days, and D’Agency, who made it all happen.

The Hack4Climate hackathon was the first to take place within the LIFE IP CARE4CLIMATE project and to be organised by D’Agency. At least two more will be organised as part of the project, the next one in the coming year.

Photo: Matic Kremžar

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