This post serves as a follow up and extension of my last post, ‘Food For Thought, Literally’. I highly recommend watching this video from John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight about food waste. The entire monologue is informative and funny, but if you don’t have seventeen and a half minutes to watch a video, just skip to minute 16:09 and watch the clip until the end. This captures–with comedic flair–the essence of the food waste paradigm we operate in everyday. Many Americans have the privilege of throwing out food they don’t want or need. This is not only a justice issue, but also an environmental issue and a financial problem, as Oliver points out in his segment.
Oliver also explains how our poisoned political climate has clobbered the issue of doing something productive with food waste. Permanent tax breaks for small businesses and farmers to donate their food seems to me like a non-partisan issue. Yet, other issues take precedence and eliminate efforts to bring this issue to the forefront. For once, I am pleased with the media and their coverage of this pressing issue. It seems as though more and more news outlets are catching on and feeling just as enraged as you or I about America’s food waste habits.
People on the grassroots level are also doing their part to reduce personal food waste. My friend Leigh Kolb published her tip for eliminating food waste on her blog, Esprit Vital. I have been utilizing her advice and saving my own veggie scraps in the freezer! It’s fun to see the bag fill up and I can’t wait to make my first vegetable broth! Maybe I’ll cook some quinoa in it and add some sautéed mushrooms, bell peppers and onions. Or I’ll freeze it and when soup-making time arrives, I’ll have plenty of homemade broth to cook up a delicious warm meal.
I hope that after reading this blog you might consider your own food waste habits. Maybe you will start your own veggie scraps bag or get better at using leftovers to create a new meal. Whatever you do, be informed and take action in ways that work for you!
Written by Brianna Johnson, ESLLC Program Coordinator