Spain to enforce ‘doggy bag’ option in bars and restaurants

Category : Science/Environment

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. doggy bag / ˈdɔgi bæg / (n.) – a small bag where customers place their unfinished food so they can bring it home

    Don’t worry if you can’t finish your food, we’ll just ask the waiter to wrap it up in a doggy bag for us.

  2. food bank / fud bæŋk / (n.) – a place where free food is given to people who don’t have enough money to buy it

    The bake shop donates breads and cakes to the food bank every weekend.

  3. the needy / ðəˈni di / (n.) – a general term used to refer to poor people

    Whenever I go out, I always bring extra food to give to the needy.

  4. foodstuff / ˈfudˌstʌf / (n.) – any resource or substance that’s used as food or to make food

    We need basic foodstuffs like flour, butter, eggs, and sugar to make bread.

  5. in force / ɪn fɔrs / (idiom) – used to say that a law exists and should be followed by the people

    Don’t stay out late, the curfew is still in force.


Read the text below.

Bars and restaurants in Spain will be obliged to offer “doggy bags” free of charge to clients to take home the food they have not eaten under a new law aimed at reducing food waste.

Under the new bill passed by the Spanish government, businesses in the food chain will have to draw up plans to try to reduce the amount of food wasted or else face possible fines.

Stores and supermarkets will be asked to reduce the price on products as their date limit for recommended consumption approaches and also reach agreements with neighborhood organizations and food banks for the donation of such products to help the needy.

Once past the “best before” date, the law recommends that foodstuffs be channeled toward use as animal feed or in the industrial production of fertilizers and biofuel.

Agriculture Fisheries and Food Minister Luis Planas said the law was aimed at “regulating and raising awareness,” so as to reduce the 1.3 million kilos (1,400 tons) of food wasted in the country each year. He said this represented 31 kilograms per person, which amounted to a loss of some 250 euros ($265) for each person.

He said only France and Italy in the European Union already have similar legislation. Planas said he hoped the bill would be approved by parliament and in force by Jan. 1, 2023.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • What do you usually do to avoid food waste? Discuss.
  • Do you agree with sending unused foodstuffs to food banks? Why or why not? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Do you think food waste is a serious problem in your country? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • If you were to draw up a policy about food waste, like the doggy bag rule for restaurants, what would it be? Discuss.
Category : Science/Environment