Food recovery is finally gaining moment in the nonprofit sector, as organizations such as the Food Recovery Network (established in 2011 by Ben Simon) build a legacy around food waste reduction. The FRN focuses on limiting food waste at 186 college campuses, where reports show that 169,000 pounds of food go to waste annually, per campus — that’s an average of 141 pounds of food waste per student every year. This is food that could be feeding the 1 out of every 6 Americans that struggles to find their next meal each day.
Volunteers visit campuses once a week to collect leftover foods to deliver to soup kitchens, food banks and homeless shelters. Last year alone, the FRN turned 388,840 pounds of food that might have otherwise gone straight to the dumps into 300,000 meals to feed the hungry.
Director Ben Simon, who also created Imperfect Produce, an organization that saves produce that is deemed unfit for sale based on aesthetics, has led the organization to save over 1.2 million pounds of food in the past four years. The major network of food recovery volunteers – who are trained in food safety by Soxedo – has also inspired political movement around food recovery, highlighting the socially just benefits, health benefits, environmental benefits to prevent climate change, and economic benefits to farmers, markets and consumers alike. The EPA and USDA recently established goals to cut food waste in half by 2030.
Read full story at: HuffingtonPost