Activists Dumpster Dive to Discourage Food Waste

Food Waste

It’s been said that Americans waste too much food. The phrase, “there are people starving in other countries, eat your food!” comes to mind. But for all those who don’t realize just how much food they are wasting, activists across the nation have taken to diving in dumpsters in order to highlight the amount of food that Americans waste.

According to sources the amount of food waste in America amounts to many billions of dollars. As much as 40 percent of food produced in America is said to go uneaten. Many have said that the amount of food waste could feed America, twice over, a big problem for those who fight against hunger in other countries. From schools to stores to the average American family, food waste has been a major problem in America and this fact can largely be seen at dump areas across the nation. Those who work at dump areas have often worked in collaboration with the government, letting them know what the trash that comes into the area is made of. Staff of dump areas, who get an up front experience of the amount of waste, have often told reporters that food is the largest source of waste in the U.S.

Though there are many efforts to stop this blatant problem, as many worry that one day there will not be enough food, activists have taken to dumpsters in order to create an awareness for Americans everywhere. One such activist, Rob Greenfield has traveled miles across the nation, eating out of dumpsters along the way. For 14 weeks has rode a bicycle made of bamboo and he has eaten nothing but what can be found in big, smelly dumpsters. He hopes to raise awareness of the billion dollar food waste. He often solicits grocery stores and pharmacies,often getting police called on him, but pushing them to donate the food that they normally throw away. He states that when he finds food in the dumpster to eat it is normally a surprising quality and quantity. According to sources he even pulled out a whole watermelon, out of a dumpster in Ohio, that had been thrown away. He has also pulled out untouched boxed of crackers, a bottle of Chardonnay, bags of marshmallows, bags of Life Savers, and more.

Many have actually joined Greenfield in his dumpster diving activities. Though his efforts are being heard amongst the media, other cases that have been spotlighted do show the good side of food waste. For example, there have been many news stories that highlight people who are forced to eat out of dumpsters, having no other choice. But one couple did have a choice and for their documentary, Just Eat It, they chose to do nothing but eat from dumpsters for six whole months. Grant Baldwin and his wife, Jen Rustemeyer, hoping to show Americans, on film, that the amount of food waste is a problem.

Though many Americans already know, and even openly admit, that food waste is a major problem in the U.S., the amount of waste by the year is actually said to be rising, making the problem worse, even with the issue at hand. Many activists post blogs about what can be done to deter the problem and suggestions can be found all over the internet.

With the problem getting worse, activists have taken to diving in dumpsters in order to show America just had bad the problem is.

Opinion by Crystal Boulware


LA Times
Good Magazine
The Kansas City Star

Image Credit -Flickr Kevin Krejci

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