MLA is a management consulting firm, providing intellectual services, and very concerned by its ecological footprint within the offices and during business trips. Among other actions, MLA contributes to the United Nations Global Compact Program that calls companies to align their strategies and operations with universal principles on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.

For that reason, it was natural for MLA to team up with Baptiste Dubanchet in his fight against food waste.

This young man, born in Bourges, who graduated from a master in Sustainable Development, has an ambitious project: to travel from Paris to New York, by bike and paddle boat, without eating anything but food wrongly regarded as expired.

Baptiste has been enrolled in this fight against food waste for years, but he wanted to go further by raising awareness on people’s bad habits when it comes to food consumption. His goal is clear: to condemn the consumer society that pushes households into throwing away enormous quantities of eatable food every day. « In Europe, there are two types of expiring dates for food: « Use-by Date » and « Best Before Date ». Unfortunately, there is not enough awareness on the difference between those two inscriptions. Indeed, « Best Before Date » products can still be eaten years after the date is exceeded, without any after-effects. Here lies the root of my project. I believe crossing the Atlantic will bring light on this problem and encourage people to sign a petition to get rid of unnecessary « Best Before Dates » on food packaging. » Baptiste explains.

The adventure started on the forecourt in front of Notre Dame de Paris two months ago, on the 6th of January 2017.

This first stage in his long journey has already taken him into:

  • A 2 516-km ride on his bike
  • 10 presentations for approximately 720 students both French and Spanish
  • 41 days that he spent eating nothing but food from supermarket’s waste. (Except for a small lapse when he decided to buy 4l of juice to have enough strength to get to the finish line. The bad weather did not let him rest…)

Once he finished this first stage of his adventure, Baptiste came back to France for « two intense weeks » of preparation for the second and most difficult phase of his journey. Indeed, he is about to cross the Atlantic on a paddle boat, from Agadir in Morocco to Martinique! The starting line will be set up on the Moroccan coast at the end of March or in early April. Once the Atlantic crossed, hopefully (the transatlantic crossing record on a paddle boat is 70 days), he will hop back on his bike for the third and last stage of his journey, which consists in pedalling 2 000 km, from Miami to New York.

Stay tuned to hear from Baptiste shortly!

You can easily partake to this great project by signing the following petition:

https://www.change.org/p/europe-lets-reduce-food-waste-get-rid-of-unnecessary-best-before-dates

This petition will be sent to the highest European authorities, and aims at getting rid of, or at least changing, the legislation on expiry dates for food.