To reduce wasted food, this app gives your leftovers to friends



See the original article in Japanese

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) [1] is one of the world’s largest conservation NGOs, operating globally in over 100 nations. The local office in Japan, WWF Japan, has recently launched a unique iPhone app called Zan Panda. It lets users share their leftover food with friends or with other people around them.

With this app, WWF Japan intends to draw attention to the effects that individual dietary habits have on the environment, and how we should be more eco-friendly. The app was developed in cooperation with Asatsu-dk and Kayac. Check out the video below to get a better idea of the concept.

I am not sure how many of us are willing to eat other’s leftovers. But speaking for myself, I would have checked this app quite often if I had it when I was in college or when I started working as a freelancer, times when I was struggling to make ends meet.

To give you some perspective, the amount of annual food waste in Japan is allegedly more than twice as the amount of the food aid provided worldwide. Also working on this issue is a non-profit organization called Second Harvest Japan which distributes food to those who can’t afford to buy it.

The overall process of food production and consumption requires large amounts of natural resources. So to promote effective use of resources and conservation, reducing food loss and waste is very important. That’s why WWF Japan launched this project. The Zan Panda app doesn’t actually resolve the issue, but hopefully it can raise some awareness.

Earlier this year, an iPad app named WWF together, developed by WWF and AKQA won a 2013 Apple Design Award. Perhaps in the future, we will see more apps like this that bring social messages to users.

Zan Panda is currently available on iOS from the Japanese app store if you’d like to give it a try.


  1. Formerly known as the World Wildlife Fund.  ↩