Sri Lankan youth showcase outstanding ideas to reduce food waste

Spirits soared at The Dentsu Rise Up Global Challenge Sri Lanka Edition, when young talent between the age group of 17-27 showcased their best ideas to inspire consumers in Sri Lanka to drastically reduce food waste and were awarded and recognized ceremoniously at the Havelock City Club House Hall.

After researching and creating their ideas, they presented them to an experienced panel of judges consisting of Prof. C.N. Wickramasinghe from the Department of Commerce and Finance at the University of Kelaniya, Asela De Silva, Creative Services Director at ADA Sri Lanka, Hanim Abdul Cader, Creative Director at TBWA Sri Lanka, Shamir Hussain, Creative Director at Dentsu Grant, Chani Perera, Strategic Advisor at AOD and Designer for MMCA and Amanda Aluvihara, Creative Director/Consultant at Dentsu Grant & Miami Ad School.

After some rigorous rounds of judging, the top 20 made it to the final round. Gayangi Seneviratne was judged the winner of The Dentsu Rise Up Global Challenge – Sri Lanka Edition 2022, bagging the Grand Prize, the latest MacBook Pro, for her idea ‘Food Pulse’. Aadila Fiyaz was judged the 1st Runner-Up, winning the latest version of the Apple iPad + Airpods Pro for her idea of ‘The Invisible Food Project’. The 2nd Runner-Up Asith Nirmal Amarasekara won the latest version of the Apple iPad for his idea of combining food waste with good health using big data and AI. Consolation prizes including Harman Kardon sound systems, JBL Bluetooth Speakers and headsets were awarded to the top 20 finalists.

Commenting on the competition, the Chairperson of The Dentsu Grant Group, Neela Marikkar, said: “Congratulations to all the winners! You made us all immensely proud with your ground-breaking innovations. We hope that this will inspire all of you, and many more young inventors and creative minds, locally and globally, to come up with creative and powerful solutions to tackle the challenges of the current world. We look forward to guiding and supporting the winners to bring their ideas to life, fulfilling the real purpose of the competition.”

The Chief Strategy Officer of Dentsu Grant and the Project Chair of The Dentsu Rise Up Global Challenge – Sri Lanka Edition 2022, Sajith Weerasinghe, added “We are thankful to the Dentsu Network and the Global Sustainability team for bringing this opportunity to the Sri Lankan youth. Over 600 youth were engaged in educating and solving food sustainability and the importance of working towards the United Nations sustainable development goal 12.3”

Eminent Sri Lankan food sustainability researcher, Professor C N Wickramasinghe, added that “Unless we urgently work towards prevention of food waste, we will have to learn to live with it, like in the case of global warming. Competitions such as The Dentsu Rise Up Challenge empower the youth to take ownership of resolving urgent, pressing issues they have inherited.”

The Dentsu Global Rise Up Challenge aims to mobilize 10,000 young people across the world to develop a creative communications campaign to tackle food waste. In Sri Lanka, 600+ young people participated in The Dentsu Rise Up Global Challenge 2022 and their brief was to come up with creative solutions to eradicate food waste and ensure food security.

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