Munich ice cream shop turns rescued, overripe bananas into vegan soft serve

Once bananas start showing brown marks or bruises, shoppers leave them on shelves, and supermarkets toss them out. No wonder they're one of the most-wasted fruits in stores.

Keep Bañana was dreamt up by two brothers who wanted to reduce some of that waste. Their solution? Rescue bananas from local supermarkets and turn them into soft-serve ice cream. In their Munich store, they blend overripe bananas with oat milk, dates and ice to create a soft serve that's naturally vegan and gluten-free.

In addition to classic banana, the ice cream comes in a variety of flavors, with optional toppings including sauces made from other rescued fruit. On the side, customers can get a slice of that time-honored destination for overripe bananas — banana bread.

Keep Bañana launched in Munich's old city center in August 2021 with an interior designed by Martino Hutz Architecture, which was recently featured in Arch Daily.

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An estimated 1.4 billion metric tons of food loss and waste are generated annually — the equivalent of more than 500 calories per day for every person on earth — creating massive negative impacts on the environment and on food security.

The problems that lead to food waste need to be tackled on a systemic scale. But on a consumer level, it's easier to nudge people in the right direction by focusing on desired behaviors: rescue food, eat more plants. You can catch more flies with vegan soft serve than with doom and gloom ;-) Or, as Keep Bañana puts it, "No drama, just banana!"

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