From Food Waste to Good Taste at Marriott Indonesia

Hotelschool The Hague joined the IN2FOOD Student Competition “From Food Waste to Good Taste at Marriott Indonesia” in Jakarta and Bandung, Indonesia, in August 2023.

Hotelschool The Hague is thrilled to announce the successful conclusion of the IN2FOOD Student Competition in Indonesia last month. This competition stands as a significant milestone in Hotelschool The Hague's (HTH) commitment as a partner of the prestigious Erasmus + IN2FOOD consortium. IN2FOOD consists of three European and five Indonesian partner universities. Headed by Anna de Visser Amundson, with the invaluable support from Joost de Vos and Conny Valk, the IN2FOOD Student Competition was carried out in collaboration with our local IN2FOOD partners, Prasetiya Mulya University (UPM), Bina Nusantara University (BINUS) and Universitas Pembangunan Jaya (UPJ).

The student competition took place in Jakarta and Bandung from 6-19 August 2023. There was a total of 47 students participating onsite (Track 1) and 17 students participating in hybrid form (Track 2). The students from Track 1 represented universities from all eight IN2FOOD consortium partners, and from Track 2 also from external universities. The Track 1 students were assigned to inter-disciplinary and culturally diverse teams of five students whereas Track 2 competed as university teams. Marriott Indonesia served as a real-world case company with the intention to move from “Food Waste to Good Taste”. HTH provided the students with a case study and assigned them to one of the Marriott Jakarta case hotels: JW Marriott, Westin, Sheraton, Ritz Carlon Pacific Place, Ritz Carlton Mega Kuningan and Le Meridien.

"Bringing together students form different continents and cultural backgrounds to work with Marriott International, one of the world’s biggest travel companies, showcases how interdisciplinarity and multi-stakeholder partnerships can work hand-in-hand to solve ‘wicked’ problems such as food waste. As the leading partner of the IN2FOOD student competition we are extremely proud of all the participating students and grateful for all the IN2FOOD colleagues as well as of being part of such a meaningful project. We were truly able to ‘create hospitable futures’ beyond our own campus walls."

Anna de Visser – Amundson

The consortium partners recruited the students from Track 1 by offering scholarships (funded by the Erasmus + IN2FOOD grant). For the students from Track 2, it was either their university or themselves who paid for their participation. Hotelschool The Hague was able to grant eight students with the IN2FOOD scholarship to join the student competition. We were delighted to have selected Fileine Sikking, Mavi (Maria Vittoria) Vassanelli, Isabeau Galiart, Ralph de Kruif, Kirsten Heijlman, Maud van der Valk, Derya Inceler and Annika van Boven. They all made an incredible contribution, both to the “From Food Waste to Good Taste at Marriott Indonesia” Student Competition as well as to the ICoHDES conference at Universitas Katolik Parahyangan (UNPAR; as part of the student competition programme).

The student teams worked almost day and night (and had fun in between!) to design and develop ideas and prototypes to fight food waste at Marriott Indonesia. While all the teams did very well, there were only two 2 winners as we had two different prizes from Marriott Indonesia and our host university UPM. The winner of the Marriott Prize for Track 1 was Team 6 with its concept “Taste without Waste” that encouraged guests via the Marriott Bonvoy app to reduce food waste. Ricarda Schneider, Area Director of Operations, said: “This solution fits perfectly with the Marriott values and is something I can see us implementing within a short timespan.”

The winning team of the Marriott Prize for Track 2 was Team 14 with their deliciously smelling soaps “Shelder Eggshell Powder”. Their idea focused on the versatility of the million tons of eggshells that are being wasted each year in Indonesia. Team 3 won the UPM prize for its innovation “HOBU”, Their idea aims to change the future of buffets with the ‘HOlogram BUffet’ that displays food via holograms to avoid food waste. Team 13 from Track 2 won the UPM prize with its ‘SOAPPEELS’; a soap made from fruit peels. For an overview of all the final prototypes and solutions from “Food Waste to Good Taste” click here.

The structure of the competition's programme was shaped by principles of design and systems thinking. We had great help from our Belgian partners, the University of Ghent, to facilitate various design thinking workshops in order to get the students into a creative and solution driven mode. We also provided them with teambuilding and theory sessions (together with other IN2FOOD partners), and keynote speeches that addressed the topic of food waste. A pivotal facet of the programme entailed immersing students within the real-world context while seeking contextually relevant solutions. For instance, the teams visited their case hotels during the first week. There, they could take a deep dive into their operations, organisation and structure to understand from an “insider’s” perspective what drivers (and potentially levers) of food waste may be for that hotel. However, we did not stop there. The students stayed in contact with their case hotels throughout the innovation process to test their ideas and receive interim feedback. Thus, experiencing a truly iterative and design research-oriented approach!

On the final day, the students started by presenting their food waste reduction solutions and prototypes in the form of a ‘Food Waste to Finish Market’ (similar to what we did last year for the IN2FOOD summer school in Bali). This format encouraged vibrant discussions, inquiries, constructive feedback, and a rich exchange of insights before going into the final presentations. During the market, students presented tasteful bites they had prepared the evening before with Mr de Vos, which was a great success.

Overall, we take great pride in the rapid learning and remarkable outputs achieved by the students, as they effectively collaborated within diverse teams over a very condensed two-week timeframe.

"The IN2FOOD challenge in Indonesia was a cultural immersion where many friendships were formed, and students came together to create unique and creative solutions to fight foodwaste. With this being my first time in Indonesia I was completely overwhelmed by the heartwarming hospitality from the local students and everyone that played a role in organizing this. I can say nothing but Terima Kasih for bringing me on this journey, I will definitely be back!”

Ralph de Kruif, HTH student & participant

The heartening feedback from the students underscores their satisfaction with the student competition with sentiments like, "This is the best programme I've ever been part of," "I had the most amazing time and could never have imagined anything like this", and "Thank you so much everyone -students, coaches, and organisers alike for the wonderful experience. I had the best time.". As IN2FOOD inherently centers on capacity-building, particularly in preparing Indonesian students to confront societal challenges, we feel positive that we have contributed to these objectives. The student competition was the last major activity HTH arranged for the IN2FOOD project which comes to end at this year. Yet, we aim to continue our partnerships in other shapes and forms with some of these incredible partners as we continue our journey to create Hospitable Futures Together.

According to HTH student and participant Fileine Sikking, "The IN2FOOD project was an experience I will never forget. I am so grateful that I got the opportunity to meet students from all over the world and work together in interdisciplinary teams, which resulted in innovative solutions for the global food waste crisis. The programme was well organised and we were welcomed extremely hospitably by the Indonesian students, lecturers and staff. Terima kasih!”

Check out the following links to learn more about the IN2FOOD consortia and the fWTF website (including inspiration from our IN2FOOD summer school in 2022). You are also welcome to contact the HTH IN2FOOD team for questions and more information.