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A by-product of being really good at feeding people on a mass scale is the waste creation. It’s the biggest joke in the food game that while some parts of the world is either malnourished or struggling to properly feed themselves, we are guilty of throwing good food straight into the bin. According to a 2010 DEWHA National Waste Report, the Australian Institute had submitted that approximately Australians waste $5.2 billion – yes, B for billion – a year on food. On average, a household will waste a minimum of $616 of food per year; with other recent research suggesting this figure is more likely to be $2,000.

The war on food waste isn’t a finger pointing exercise. We all need to play an active role in identifying ways to individually, and as a group to minimise food waste. While on the extreme spectrum there are the Dumpster Divers of Melbourne and Sydney, but there are safer and non-law breaking options to make a dint in tackling food waste.

Katy Barfield founder & CEO of the YUME APP and Head Chef of St Crispin Joe Grbac

Introducing the YUME APP, empowering cafes and restaurants across Melbourne to sell surplus food or donate to YUME’S partner food charities. Since its inception in June 2015, 250 businesses have already jumped on board. The app empowers you, the consumer, to have the opportunity of purchasing half price, restaurant quality surplus food that would otherwise been binned. For instance, half priced 5 Dime Bagels – now that’s an attractive offer.

The digital food app takes a small cut – 10 percent – from all sales as it facilitates and connects consumer to vendor.

On Saturday March 5th, between the hours of 3-4pm will be YUME HOUR. During this time, some of Melbourne’s best restaurants and cafes will cook a limited number of small to medium dishes to support the YUME APP. The ‘yumeals’ can be purchased with a gold coin donation via the YUME APP, and all ingredients used to create the dish are surplus food that would otherwise be discarded.

Some of the Melbourne Chefs committed to YUME HOUR Sat March 5, 2016

“From 3-4pm on March 5, Melburnians will have an opportunity to eat at some of the city’s best eateries by reserving exclusive food offers through THE YUME APP,” Katy Barfield said. “It’s really simple. You download the app; enter an email address and password of your choosing. When you redeem an offer, you will be asked to enter your credit card details to finalise the $1 payment.”

Approximately 50 chefs/venues will take part in YUME HOUR, including Joe Grbec (St Crispin), Alejandro Saravia (Pastuso), Jesse Gerner (Bomba/Green Park/Anada), Chris Moran (San Telmo) and Kam McManamey (Botherambo). All proceeds from YUME HOUR will be donated to Victoria’s four main food rescue charities: SecondBite, OzHarvest, FareShare and Foodbank.

Some of the food offerings include:

  • Joe Grbec, St Crispin: salad of beetroot tops and bottoms, shaved carrot ends, roasted walnuts, celery juice;
  • Alejandro Saravia, Pastuso (2 dishes):
    • Pastel Choclo: ‘Hearty’ South American Shepard’s Pie filled with slow cooked, smoked pork neck and alpaca heart, topped with sweet corn and potato off-cut puree
    • Peruvian Pudin: Bread crusts soaked in milk, currants and creme caramel topped with grated apple peel;
  • Jesse Gerner (Bomba/Green Park/Anada):  Bomba: Jamon croquetters made from jamon offcuts;
  • Chris Moran (San Telmo):
    • (2 dishes): Sage and beef meatball with tomato sugo and polenta pecorino fries + Lamb, prosciutto and broccoli empanada; and,
    • Kam McManamey (Botherambo): Kaffir lime and coriander root sorbet.

WASTE AWAY’s panel

The YUME APP is also hosting WASTING WAY, an industry seminar that will be discussing how Melbourne is tackling food waste and its current challenges. The panellists include CEO of Melbourne Food & Wine Festival Natalie O’Brien, Watch My Waste researcher Dianne McGrath, Chef Guy Grossi, The YUME APP founder Katy Barfield, Melbourne MP Adam Bandt and the manager of Corporate Citizenship for KPMG Australia Kaushik Sridhar. Entry is free and will be held at Capi – South Melbourne – from 4pm on the 5 March.

Be sure to have your YUME APP ready for March 5 with room in your stomach and fingers poised; this is an opportunity to chow down on some delicious dishes from rescued ingredients.

The Important Stuff


When: 5th March 2016
Where: participating restaurants around Melbourne
Time: 3pm- 4pm
Instructions: activate and set-up your YUME APP, locate a participating restaurant/venue via the YUME APP, select your dishes for a gold coin donation, pick up and enjoy quality food that would otherwise been binned.

More information of the Yume App can be found here. The app is available via Google Play store or Apple’s App Store.


When: 5th March 2016
Where: CAPI 2-4 Buckhurst Street, South Melbourne
Time: 4pm- 5pm
Price: Free
Expect: Engaging conversation about how Melbourne is tackling the issue of food waste

Food in pictures

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