On November 13th, Princess Marie attended the Stop Wasting Food Dinner in Copenhagen.
The international Stop Wasting Food Dinner was hosted by Selina Juul and the Ambassador of the Netherlands to Denmark Henk Swarttouw to support the fight against food waste. In addition to Princess Marie, guests included the Danish Minister for Environment and Food Jakob Ellemann-Jensen and high-level leaders from organizations and businesses. The hope is to make this dinner an annual tradition with a different embassy hosting each year.
About Princess Marie attending the dinner, Selina Juul said: “We are very thankful that H.R.H. Princess Marie will participate in our dinner against food waste – and we are very delighted for the Princess’ enthusiasm in the fight against food waste. Earlier this year in Stop Wasting Food, we had honor and pleasure to prepare a lunch with focusing on food waste at the Princess’ own home together with the Princess, the Princess’ children, and ten school children.”
The dinner consisted of a menu made out of surplus food and prepared by Dutch chef Lucas Jeffries – who works at the InStock restaurant which fights against food waste- and Danish chef Martin Jacobsen – who works at the Kadeau and the Nabo restaurants. The surplus food included imperfect fruits and vegetables and any food that would have been wasted because it did not fit the supermarkets’ expectations (sometimes just because of a misplaced tag). The guests were invited to take the leftovers home in biodegradable boxes. Princess Marie had the opportunity to see them cook after her arrival.
About the guests attending, Selina Juul said: “The people who come here for dinner, they are all very relevant to the agenda. They did not only came because they are famous and to eat some nice food. They came because they all have a relationship with the fight against food waste”
The idea of the dinner came from the Dutch Ambassador to Denmark Henk Swarttouw: “Too much food is wasted in the world. Over 33 percent of all food produced is wasted, so I would very much like to help raise awareness about this problem and support the fight. That is why I have chosen to become an ambassador of the Stop Wasting Food Movement” he said to TV2 Lorry.
For the event, Princess Marie wore a new Zara dress (with thanks to @JAusten). The dress features “a V-shaped opening and a matching tie detail at the neck and long sleeves with wide cuffs, a seam at the waist and a loose-fitting A-line skirt with a wide ruffle trim on the hem.”
Here’s a closer look at the spade print:
Marie paired the new dress with her Jimmy Choo Romy glitter pumps, an old ufo burgundy velvet clutch and her By Malene Birger belt.
For the jewels, Marie chose her Christine Hvelplund pendant earrings with her Christine Hvelplund ring.
Tonight, Queen Margrethe hosted a gala dinner for members of the Government, members of the Danish Parliament and Danish members of the European Parliament. Crown Princess Mary, Prince Joachim, Princess Marie, and Princess Benedikte were in attendance. Crown Prince Frederik could not attend as he is currently in Sydney, Australia where he is attending the Invictus Games.
It was hosted by King Frederik IX and Queen Ingrid. Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik followed this tradition once she became Queen in 1972 and they even created a tradition of their own following the same pattern. Indeed, since 1976, a gala dinner for important members of Danish arts and culture is held every four years, reflecting the late Prince Henrik’s passion for art.
During this evening, the guests first greet the members of the royal family one by one before enjoying dinner and music.
The soprano Signe Sneh Durholm and the pianist Peter Mollerhoj performed before a surprise appearance by comedian Soren Ostergaards who appeared as his character “Smadremanden” and provided a lot of entertainment for all the guests.
You can see a video of the arrival of the guests and the royal family here.
She paired the gown with jewels from her favorite Danish jeweler Christine Hvelplund. She had owned the earrings and the bracelet for a while now and we see them often. She chose the same jewels back in 2017. She also wore a ring but I haven’t seen any good close up so I can’t say anything about it.
On Saturday evening, Princess Marie attended Gadens Born’s charity gala in Copenhagen.
Gadens Born was founded in 2012 by Pia Lindell Qwist after a visit to India when she saw how bad street children’s living conditions were there: “Gadens Boern fights to improve the living conditions of homeless children in Kolkata, India, by supporting initiatives within education and care. The objective of Gadens Børn is to provide homeless and destitute children access to opportunities and tools they can use to change their present conditions and potentially also their future. […] We primarily rely on the hard work of volunteers, and we always try to keep our administrative expenses to an absolute minimum. Even though we are a small organization we work hard to make a big difference. Help us help others.”
The foundation’s main focus is social outreach at Sealdah Station, the second biggest railway station in Kolkata, where a lot of children live with or without their parents:”A large number of street children live at the station – some with their parents and others without but true for most them is that they are not publicly registered with a birth certificate. That means that they are not able to attend the local government schools or receive other government services. Some have been thrown out of home while others have run away due to different reasons, often involving physical violence, addiction or sexual assault. […]We seek them out and offer them food, health checks, clothes, activities and love, and care.”
Gadens Born also created the Aasha School (‘Aasha’ means ‘hope’ in Hindi). It has 150 students enrolled from the local area. The school offers one daily vegetarian meal, adult contact & care, one monthly excursion, and education that builds on caring relations. (You can read more about the school here). They also help mothers with food, birth preparations, and medical check-ups.
Upon her arrival, Princess Marie was greeted by Pia Lindell Qwist’s daughter Mynthe. Princess Marie was sitting at the main table with Pia Lindell Qwist and Lars Stolte, the Chairman of the Board. During the charity gala, an auction of gifts given by Danish companies was held to help raise money for the foundation and it was very successful as they have raised one million Danish Kroner (≈ $155,600). You can donate to Gadens Born here.
After the auction, singers Alex Ambrose and Barbara Miranda performed. About Princess Marie attending the gala, Pia Lindell Qwist said: “I am deeply grateful that HKH Princess Marie will participate in our charity gala. It’s really a show of all the work our volunteers do to make a difference for the street children in India.”
For this charity gala, Princess Marie wore a new black sequin top which she paired with black velvet pants. I believe the top could be a sequinned bodysuit by Michael Kors. If it is indeed her top, it’s her first item from the main Michael Kors line after buying from the less expensive Michael Michael Kors line so it’ll be interesting to see how her relationship with the brand develops.
She paired the outfit with her Jimmy Choo ‘Romy’ black glitter pumps and an old UFO clutch from 2008.
Marie also wore her Christine Hvelplund cross ring and new earrings that I haven’t managed to identify yet.
We’ll next see Prince Joachim and Princess Marie on Tuesday when they’ll join the royal family to attend the Opening of Parliament.
On Tuesday, Princess Marie visited FoedevareBanken – the Danish Food Bank- in Copenhagen, as part of her involvement in the fight against food waste in Denmark. The NGO’s motto is “From Food Waste to Meals” (‘Fra Madspild til Maltid’)
FoedevareBanken is a nonprofit organization fighting food waste and food poverty in Denmark. The Danish Food Bank fights food waste while ensuring better food to socially disadvantaged people in Denmark: “On the one hand, huge amounts of food are discarded on a daily basis in the food sector. This means a waste of resources and it causes a great strain on the environment. On the other hand, some of the most disadvantaged people in our society are often denied the opportunity for a daily and nutritious meal, which is of vital importance to their health.”
Princess Marie was received by Karen-Inger Thorsen, Managing Director John Køppler and Project Manager Marie Uldall. During the visit, she visited the Food Bank’s warehouse and was given an introduction to how the Food Bank and the organization’s 250 volunteers handle surplus food from industry and food producers and allocate it to schools organizations for socially disadvantaged in Denmark. They also have stores in Copenhagen, Aarhus, and Kolding. The organization doesn’t receive food that is over the consumption date but food that – for many different reasons-can not be sold. This may be due to errors on the label, seasonal items, overproduction, short date or other conditions.
Princess Marie also had the opportunity to see a van being filled with a lot of sweets that were going to be delivered to socially disadvantaged people later in the day. She also met some of the volunteers who spoke about their work at the Food Bank.
The Danish Food Bank was founded as a voluntary association in January 2008. Thus the organization is the first initiative amongst the Nordic countries to not only reduce food waste systematically and on a large scale, but also provide healthy food to socially disadvantaged people. The Danish Food Bank only receive food from the food sector and warehouses: ” We receive a fresh surplus of food from producers, warehouses, and wholesales. 6 days a week our volunteers collect and redistribute the food to organizations working with socially disadvantaged kids, young people and adults. Our work is made possible due to the support from the many volunteering people and organizations supporting us; food donors wanting to donate their fresh surplus food, organizations wishing to receive food, volunteers offering their labor and time and last, but not least businesses and private citizens supporting The Danish Food Bank financially or with knowhow.”
The Danish Food Bank is also supported financially by foundations. Indeed, in 2013 The Danish Food Bank received 7 million euros from the VELUX FOUNDATION covering the period from 2013-2017: “The purpose of this donation was to help The Danish Food Bank expand to East Jutland, to strengthen the organization and to develop a strategy for income, thereby ensuring the organization as a financially sustainable organization.”
Princess Marie has been very involved in the fight against food waste in the past few years. She works with the Stop Wasting Food Movement (Stop Spild Af Mad), and she is Patron of the Better Food for More People – World Food Summit. She has given several interviews about the initiative and her personal experience and she also welcomed school children in her private home to teach them how to avoid food waste as much as possible.
After her visit, Princess Marie said to Billed-Bladet: “I am very impressed that so many volunteers work here. They help to distribute food to the whole country. It is a very good organization”
About the visit, the Food Bank’s Director Karen-Inger Thorsen said: “We met a very dedicated and knowledgeable princess who clearly burns for the area of food waste and who was very well-prepared. A great pleasure!”
For this event, Princess Marie wore a recycled outfit. She chose her black and white Tara Jarmon clover-printed dress.
She paired it with her favorite Carlend Copenhagen ‘Aicha’ clutch and ufo black pumps dating back to 2015.
She wore new Christine Hvelplund alphabet earrings. She chose an A and H for Athena and Henrik, just like her Christine Hvelplund alphabet necklace. She also wore a new Hermes black leather bracelet (with thanks to Nuria for the close-up photo).
As Patron of the 2018 World Food Summit – which she will officially open on Thursday- Princess Marie was a guest on Aftenshowet, Denmark’s biggest evening show, on Monday evening.
You can watch the twelve-minutes interview here. I tried to translate as much as I could based on the Danish subtitles (please credit me if you use the translation elsewhere).
Interviewer: Now I welcome Princess Marie! We must talk about the fight against food waste on the occasion of the World Food Summit in Copenhagen. You will give the opening speech , what is your main message ?
Marie: There are more than one message but one of the most important is that we can all make a difference if we have the right knowledge. It is important to teach our children and young people about healthy and good food. Another important message is that we need to think about our planet. Food waste is a waste of important resources that are already limited. The production of food costs a lot of the environment so we should at least eat it! Now in Denmark we became really aware of food waste and we are the pioneer country in this area. There are initiatives and organizations who are really involved in the fight against food waste. Danes and danish companies really want to focus on this.
I: So you are saying that we are well in our way but that there is still a lot to do. Statistics show that 700000 tons of food are thrown out annually in Denmark. When did you notice that this was a big problem in Denmark?
M: Unfortunately, it’s a problem throughout the western world. There are some terrible numbers. We produce and consume too much. We must address that.
I: We should see examples of your commitment
[ a clip about Marie is shown
“A Princess with a passion. It’s the fight against food waste. It’s one matter that Princess Marie has been fighting for years. Princess Marie is the Patron of the World Food Summit.
It was the love of this man [Prince Joachim, a clip from the engagement announcement is shown] that bought the Princess to Denmark ten years ago.
In May 2008 took place the wedding of Princess Marie and Prince Joachim. In the years since her wedding , the Princess has been involved in this important cause. In 2014, she went to Ethiopia as Patron of DanChurchAid to focus on hunger and malnutrition. This year she received ten children from Helsingor in her own private home to have lunch off so-called surplus food. Moreover, the Princess takes part in openings of stores fighting to avoid food waste.’ ]
I: I will return to why your heart is close to this cause. That’s something you got from your childhood. But you are committed to a lot of causes like AIDS-Fondet, the Association for Epilepsy and DanChurchAid. When did it became important for you to engage in these topics that are also close to the Danes’s hearts ?
M: It was important to contribute to society and take on tasks which helped to lift Denmark and of course help people in need. Most importantly, I’m using my heart in what I do. That way, I am stronger. Fortunately, there are many people fighting for these causes in Denmark so you get inspired very quickly.
I: Do you feel that the Danes have had high expectations about your contribution ?
M: Yes, but they are reasonable expectations. I can use my position to raise awareness about important causes and thus make a difference so that’s a natural expectation from them.
I: Have you felt pressured by that ?
M: No, I feel like it is as a huge opportunity not as a requirement.
I: You said you could use your position to raise awareness about important causes. As a Princess, you are like a spoke-person but there is many causes to choose from but with food waste, it comes from your childhood right ?
M: It’s deep in me and food is a huge part of French culture – and of course also of the Danish culture- and although food waste is reduced , we still thrown away 700000 tons annually in Denmark like you said but there are 800 million people who are starving. These are terrible numbers and it is an important cause to support.
I: How was avoiding food waste in your childhood home ?
M: It was a natural development in my upbringing. We had great respect for food and I remember clearly the hunger disaster in Ethiopia in the 80s and the terrible pictures of the very thin children. I was very shocked and tried to never waste food.
I: Is it bad that consumers in our part of the world are wasting food while others are having a hard time and are starving ?
M: Yes, it’s the odd distribution of food in the world that I struggle to understand. We can all make a difference, it’s not that hard.
I: We can do that in very real ways in our own homes but is it also important for you to do it in your own home ?
M: Yes, it’s very important to me to teach my children about it. They are very curious and they want to contribute. They are proud when they do something good. They are very interested. It’s not a fight, it’s fun.
I: Do you actually help your children understand the perspective of doing something good in the world ?
M: They do not understand it all but they do understand that they are doing something good for the world. They listen to me telling them about my travels with DanChurchAid and about the children I met and they ask many questions so they end up understanding.
I: We have a few questions for you from the Danes because too many would like to do better in their everyday lives. Are you ready to answer a few questions ?
M: Of course.
1st question : With children in the house, I often end up with leftovers after dinner. What helps the Princess to make leftovers more exciting ?
M: That’s a good question, I’m not the best cook but I do my best. There are many different ways , for example to add cheese or use different spices like coriander, soy, lemon and ginger. Make it a little different. A new taste, a new dish!
I: That may be something that we need think about to give it a different taste!
M: Yes, adding spices do a lot!
I: It’s a simple and good trick! Do you bring your children into the kitchen?
M: Yes, I do ! They do not always bother but they like to be around. It’s also a great way to teach them about healthy foods and what to do if a vegetable isn’t entirely fresh , you can cut a part of it off for example.
I: Are you children willing to eat everything ?
M: Well, they try! It’s important that they try! I am not too strict but it’s important that they at least taste it.
I: Most parents may recognize that having children in the kitchen does something relative to the extent of they willingness to try.
M: Yes, it gets them more motivated.
I: We have another question.
2nd question: Do you also cut the remoulade off and use all the content of the fridge, and turn yoghurts around to avoid food waste?
M: Yes, almost everything in the fridge will be used up, we try to use everything. We also have a dog who likes to eat what’s left!
I: We have one more question.
3rd question: Does your Royal Highness have any tip to avoid food waste whether you’re single or a family?
M: It is important to think sensibly when shopping. One has to know what is already in their fridge, imagine meals and avoid impulsive purchases. You must also remember how many you are and not buy more than necessary. It is also possible to use smaller plates.
I: Does that work?
M: Yes,and I prefer to serve twice rather than throwing out. At least for the children.
I: Do you think a few meals in advance? So that you can use everything ?
M:We usually eat everything because I have very hungry children and a very hungry husband and we try to think sensibly.
I: Thank you for your answers! And all the best for the World Food Summit.
M: Thank you so much, thank you!
For this tv appearance, Princess Marie debuted a new dress by Goat Fashion. She chose the Gaynor dress in blush. It is still available here.
She paired it with her Jimmy Choo ‘Romy’ suede pumps and her Christine Hvelplund ring.