In honor of food waste prevention week, here are a few non-profit organizations fighting food waste that you should be aware of.
Keep Austin Fed
Made to reduce hunger and help the environment, Keep Austin Fed is an organization that prioritizes making sure that local citizens don't have to worry about whether or not they will have another meal. The project delivers an average of 12,000 meals each week reaching thousands of citizens and families across the city. They are partnered with many surrounding companies such as Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Chipotle, and more. The organizations take both money and food donations as well as volunteer work. One in seven people in Austin don't know where their next meal will come from and Keep Austin Fed's mission is to provide them with food. Thirty percent of meals in the United States go uneaten transferring to landfills where it then creates harmful methane gas. Through their mission, they are reducing this waste, therefore protecting the environment, and feeding their neighbors who are facing food insecurity. Keep Austin Fed is a hardworking organization that provides food to numerous citizens and families in need.
Reducing and delivering nearly 300,000 pounds of food daily, City Harvest distributes food, free of charge, to soup kitchens, food pantries, and many other community food programs. This company has 23 trucks that drive 7 days a week receiving food from many donors to feed community members of all ages. They rescue food from nearly 2,000 businesses and will be able to deliver 111 million pounds of food this year due to the abundance of the generous support of hundreds of corporations and foundations such as Give, The Starr Foundation, Bank of America, and so many more. City Harvest brings fresh food to communities in New York that are experiencing food insecurity and also teaches the basics of nutrition, healthy cooking as well as eating skills. They have also partnered with the New York City Assistance Collaborative and have designed an app that allowed easier access to help citizens find free food, Since founded in 1842, City Harvest has kept New York citizens fed and helped serve as a clutch for many communities.
Food Rescue U.S.
Using the produce that the food industry passes by, Food Rescue helps provide produce, fish, meat, dairy, and premade meals. By using an app to locate this food, volunteers pick up and deliver it to citizens facing food insecurity. As 42 million people in the United States suffer from food insecurity, food rescue, with 13,000 volunteers, 2,100 social service agency partners, and 2,100 food donor partners, works to put an end to hunger and food waste. Food Rescue was founded in 2011 when the founders realized that food insecurity and waste could be solved by innovative technology, volunteers, and a direct transfer model. By 2014, this organization has rescued over 6 million meals and were distributing them to three different counties. Since it's founding 11 years ago, food rescue has provided 88 million meals and prevented 113 million pounds of excess food from landfills. They are now in 38 locations in the United States. Their app reduces food waste by allowing food donors to transfer extra food to social service agencies, provides meals by giving agencies the chance to join and receive food, and also creates a schedule of food rescues that volunteers can claim and complete. Food Rescue has helped countless U.S. citizens gain access to free and nutritious food.
The Felix Project
Based out of London, an organization known as the Felix Project is a non-profit organization that collects fresh food. This food, thrown out by wholesalers, is then used by this company and delivered to multiple charities and schools in the London area. At least 3 million tons of food are wasted annually by the UK food industry. Millions of people including 4 million children in the UK live in households that cannot afford enough fruit, vegetables, fish, and healthy foods. Established in 2016, the Felix Project has received food yearly from over 539 suppliers including supermarkets, wholesalers, farms, restaurants, and delis. This food is then sorted and delivered to approximately 1,000 charities, schools, and programs in London. In 2020 alone, they delivered 21.1 million meals across London providing many citizens access to fresh and nutritious food. They are partnered with many surrounding companies such as D&D London, Athora, Ocado, and many more as well as local food suppliers such as Borna, Bestway Wholesale, Chic P, and others. Since its founding, the Felix Project has helped provide food to countless citizens and families across London and has helped many charities and schools feed their members.
Created by four students from the University of Maryland in 2011, FRN, widely known as the Food Recovery Network, was formed after students noticed that many perfectly good dining hall meals were ending up in the dump at the end of the night. Thanks to this program, at the end of their school year, over 30,000 meals were recovered and sent to the DC area where they were delivered t hunger-fighting, nonprofit organizations. FRN is the biggest student-led movement combatting food waste in the United States. Their programs have spread across the country on over 180 campuses and have delivered close to 4.1 million meals to needy citizens and families. The company is partnered with many organizations throughout the country and donors such as Oxo, General Mills, Whole Foods, and so many more. Their statistics show that from July 2020 to June 2021, 1.3 million pounds of food were diverted from landfills to people, 1.1 million meals were donated to numerous communities, 7,000 pounds of food were recovered per student chapter, 6,000 meals were served per student chapter, 32 new students joined a chapter, there were 2,459 volunteers across all chapters, and 91 businesses enrolled in the program. This widely-known organization has helped serve food to numerous citizens across the United States.
Rock and Wrap it Up Project
For the past 28 years, the Rock and Wrap it Up Project has served food from production film sets, that are generally thrown out, for families in need. They also wrote and helped pass an act as the Federal Food Donation which encourages general building to feed the hungry, not the landfills. Since their establishment, they have recovered food from 56 surrounding production cites including TV series, feature films, and talk shows. The organization takes food and money donations as well as volunteers,. Rock and Wrap it Up strives to inspire their school partners to add food waste information into their lesson plans in hopes to educate the upcoming generations on a worldwide issue. This organization has 7 other projects ranging from feeding veterans to feeding hospital patients. Rock and Wrap it Up has been feeding communities for 28 years and has helped numerous citizens have access to fresh food.
Reducing food waste, nourishing communities, and providing jobs, Food Shift focuses on saving food that would otherwise be put directly into landfills. This food is then given to local community members that may often get overlooked. Food Shift feeds and helps the community in ways that other organizations cannot. Food Shift strives to create inclusive and an eco-friendly environment through food. Though the Bay Area has an abundance of food and wealth, 1 in 4 people in the area face food insecurity. Throughout the process of getting food to tables, food is wanted. For a household of 4, the annual average of money spent on wasted food is approximately $1,600. This affects famiy's financial state as well as the environment. Their motto is, "For the people, by the people, with the people." This means that Food Shift values the community above all, but also chose to walk through the journey with the community. This organization greatly benefits the Bay Area and serves nutritious food to its citizens.
Love Food Hate Waste
Teaching and informing all members of society, Love Food Hate Waste is attempting to rid the planet of food waste through education. By educating people on how to effectively combat food waste such as meal planning, meal prep, and so much more. They are saving good food from being wasted and ending up in landfills. Based out of the UK, Love Food Hate Waste strives to save the food that normally ends up in garabe bins and creating them into meals for people facing food insecurity. With a household of four, families can save up to 60 euros per month by reducing their food waste. In turn this will help save the environment by reducing the amount of food that ends up in landfills. Love Food Hate Waste have three main steps to making a difference with food waste: plan your shopping and get more for your money, make your food last longer, and get more from your shopping by using what you buy. Love Food Hate Waste is an eco-friendly organization that actively combats the food waste problem.
Each and every one of these organizations dedicates countless time and effort to making our planet a better place. In honor of food waste prevention week, take notice of local food organizations around you that are striving to make a true difference in the community.