freeganism and food waste

July 21, 2009

Have I mentioned how much I love BBC Radio 4?  As someone without a TV for nearly five years, Radio 4 is on in my kitchen for a good part of the day.  I catch snippets every time I go in there (which is a lot!) and often end up sticking around to listen because there’s usually something interesting going on.

Yesterday, the topic was freeganism and the environmental impact of the vast amount of food that goes to waste every day.

I couldn’t pull myself away listening to freegan Tristram Stuart.   Freegans, of course, forage for dumped food.  While most people find this disgusting, says Stuart, the truly apprehensible thing is how much good food is thrown away.  Stuart talked about how supermarkets deliberately overstock simply to provide what he calls a “cornucopia of choice.” “By wasting so much food, we are hording agricultural land,” he says.  Stopping wasting food, on the other hand, requires little or no sacrifice.   His motto?  Buy what you need, eat what you buy.  Find out how by listening to the show here.  The freeganism part starts at 21:00.

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  1. Jess July 23, 2009 at 07:56

    Really! That’s interesting. I can imagine with how abundant their shelves are, especially the mounds of dark brown avocados. So much guacamole to be made.

  2. earthmother July 21, 2009 at 19:29

    That is so wild that you wrote about this today. I just learned about the whole freegan movement here in the US! Apparently, the best finds (ie. the most waste) are at Whole Foods.

    The whole thing fascinates me.

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