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photo courtesy of Thurn Film

Production Report featured in
German Films Quarterly 01/2013

“Eat your broccoli!”, “I want to see an empty plate”, “Finish your food”: no matter what the phrase, we encourage children not to waste food and yet, today, half of it is still thrown away.

FOOD SAVERS (ESSENSRETTER) is the story of people who are fighting for a different approach to one of life’s essentials. Farmers, supermarket executives, cooks, design students and completely average households, each one is at a different point in the supply, production and consumption chain. What they all share is the desire to bring about a new appreciation of food, replacing the one that, bit by bit, has been lost in recent years.

Each one of their examples poses the question: why is it so difficult to reverse this trend? Analyzing each point of the production process, FOOD SAVERS shows that, purely from a business management point view, throwing food away can even pay off, although it is a disaster for the environment and feeding of the world. The film then examines what kinds of approaches to a solution make sense.

The basic issue, pursued throughout the commentary, is that if politics and society have already formulated the clear-cut goal to stop food waste, why, then, is it so hard to make this goal a reality? By the end it becomes obvious that this is a “task of the century”, a state of affairs that can only be ended with a fundamental change in our way of doing business, by bringing economic pressure to bear.

Every participant in FOOD SAVERS is confronted with a guiding question with regard to their ethical standpoint. A movement in favor of greater appreciation of food already exists amongst the widest of social groups. Especially encouraging is that the subject has become particularly important to young people, too. In the process, very different views of the world reach the same conclusion: whether Christian, Muslim, Buddhist or Humanist, food has a value that goes way beyond the monetary.

Category Documentary
Director Valentin Thurn
Screenplay Valentin Thurn
Cinematography Frank Kranstedt
Producer Astrid Vanderkerkhove
Co-Producer Valentin Thurn
Production Company Schnittstelle/Cologne, in co-production with Thurn Film/Cologne
 English, German
Shooting Dates October 2012-January 2013

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