It is customary that on the eve of the holy month of Ramadan in particular and at every religious celebration in general, markets, supermarkets and other commercial spaces are crowded. For the month of fasting, attendance at the stalls, especially for those relating to food products, is at its peak. Despite the fact that this Ramadan is marked by an unusual context of inflation and despite the decline in the purchasing power of a large part of our fellow citizens, Moroccans do not prevent themselves from buying.
If Ramadan is known to be a month with a sharp increase in food consumption, it also rhymes with food waste. According to studies by the International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) and the FAO, nearly half of Moroccans (45.1%), in good or bad years, throw away between 6 and 51 dollars per month, or about 60 to 500 DH, during the holy month. In North Africa on average 210 kilos are wasted per individual in one year. 85% are by the producer or trader and 15% by the consumer. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) deplores the fact that “every Moroccan puts 91 kg of food in the trash every year”, while 2/3 of households spend below the average. . Also according to the FAO, each year, a third of the food produced in the world is lost or wasted, while nearly a billion people do not have enough to eat.
But let’s go back to this month of Lent, where waste is on the rise and where even noble products are thrown in the trash. However, Ramadan is intended to be a sacred and spiritual month and an opportunity for families to strengthen social ties by meeting each evening around the table. It is also and by way of facts a month of gluttony and unfortunately of waste. What is thrown away impacts the shopping basket, the state economy and natural resources and represents a risk for the environment because it is not treated.
However, food waste, which surges during Ramadan as consumer habits change during this holy month, begins with the frenzy of shopping at all costs to prepare for it. Our traditions and customs create an increased demand for various products, hence a consumption culture specific to this month and which is sometimes quite excessive. Especially since during the month of Ramadan, more than the others, our authorities have always ensured that the national market is supplied with a “considerable” quantity of widely consumed food products and those specific to this holy month. .
Also a total upheaval grips consumers on the eve of Ramadan and the pace of purchases accelerates dizzily and we no longer really control our budget. We then witness among Moroccan consumers a buying frenzy in food and even household appliances so much so that it crosses without shuddering the threshold of what the stock market can usually tolerate. And go ahead that I rush and to hell with the financial damage to the stalls of flour, tomato, eggs, milk, spices … or that I find myself buying bowls and spoons, even an oven or even a TV, to ward off fate and predict Ramadan Karim. Consuming excessively and buying profusely is good only morally. However, it would be wiser to adopt rigor and vigilance in the face of this bulimia to this phenomenon which can prove harmful both for the stock market and for health during Ramadan when unfortunately gastric diseases are more frequent than at all year round.