The Nonprofit Grocery Store That’s Not Letting Food Go to Waste
When I lived in Washington D.C., I participated in a program where volunteers made bologna or peanut butter & jelly sandwiches using food nearing its expiration date that was donated to us from grocery stores in the area. We’d then stop at different parts of the city to hand out the sandwiches to the homeless.
Grocery stores often throw away perfectly good food that’s nearing its sell-by date, even as millions of people across the country go hungry. They often cite liability and bad press as reasons for not donating the food, and dumpster divers have stocked their fridges with food they’ve rescued from garbage bins.
Doug Rauch, the former president of Trader Joe’s, has come up with his own solution to ending food waste: In a low-to-middle income neighborhood in Boston, Rauch has opened a nonprofit grocery store called the Daily Table, where canned vegetables are two for a dollar, and bananas are 29 cents a pound. The vegetables might be a little misshapen, but they’re still perfectly good to eat.
Checking out with the cashier, customer Manuel Goncalves admits he surveyed the expiration dates before putting food in his basket.
“I looked around, I saw the date. I saw the food being prepared in the back,” he says. “And I felt comfortable to come back and buy as much as I can.
His groceries come to $30.46. “That’s it? Wow!” he says.
For just over $30, he walks out with what looks like enough groceries to feed his family for a week.
It’s a great concept, and I hope it catches on in more cities across he country.
Thanks to Anne for sending us this story. Photo via The Daily Table.