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QC restaurants required to serve half rice

Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - June 25, 2014 - 4:59pm

MANILA, Philippines - The Quezon City council approved on third and final reading a measure that will require restaurants and fast food chains in the city to offer half cup servings of rice.

“Empirical evidence show that the availability of half cup or half order of rice serving would minimize wastage especially within the food service industry,” read the ordinance introduced by fifth district councilor Allan Butch Francisco.

The measure, still to be signed by Mayor Herbert Bautista, would require all restaurants to include in their menu a half cup serving of rice– or around 80 grams– priced at exactly half of the cost of one cup serving.

It would cover “all business institutions and companies responsible for any meal prepared outside the home.” These include restaurants, fastfood chains, school and hospital eateries, food courts and catering businesses with the city.

Failure to comply with the measure on the first offense would merit a written reprimand. Second offense violators will be penalized with a P1,000 fine, while third offense will be fined with P2,000 and one month suspension of license or permit to operate.

According to the ordinance, a report by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) showed that the country wastes P23 million worth of rice daily accounting to P8 billion a year. He said the amount is sufficient to feed 4.3 million people.

It also cited data from the Department of Science and Technology's Food and Nutrition Institute saying “each Filipino wastes an average of three tablespoons or nine grams of rice daily, which is equivalent to 3.3 kilograms per year.”

“The hundred tons of rice wasted each year, not just in the Philippines but in the whole world, need to be taken seriously, our social conscience will tell us that the rice we waste can just be the very rice we need to feed the hungry and the undernourished,” read the ordinance.

“Quezon City is very sincere in its efforts to explore viable means that would facilitate the attainment of (the campaign to reduce rice wastage),” it added.

The office of the mayor, with the recommendation of the city health officer, will be tasked to issue the appropriate rules and regulations to ensure the proper implementation of the ordinance.

ALLAN BUTCH FRANCISCO CITY CUP DEPARTMENT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY FOOD AND NUTRITION INSTITUTE HALF INTERNATIONAL RICE RESEARCH INSTITUTE MAYOR HERBERT BAUTISTA QUEZON CITY RICE
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