Meet Tony Moyer and Sam Troyer, brother-in-laws in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. They’ve been dumpster diving for 10 months, collecting $1,000’s of good food and donating it to people in need. But in October they were arrested for dumpster diving at a CVS and charged with loitering and prowling at night as well as criminal trespassing.
I’ve dived into over 2,000 dumpsters in over 25 states across the USA. By now I’ve pulled out tens of thousands of dollars worth of perfectly good food. Most of it I’ve given away but I’ve also lived solely off food from grocery store dumpsters for months at a time. My mission is to raise awareness about food waste and to reduce food waste and hunger in the USA. I don’t see dumpster diving as THE solution to food waste or hunger but at the same time I figure if the foods going to waste right now, why not eat it? Dumpster diving is not a global solution but for thousands of people it is an individual solution to reduce their environmental impact and feed themselves. So for those of you out there interested in saving a ton of money on food, reducing your environmental impact, or sharing a huge bounty of food with your friends and people in need I’m here to help with that. After 3 years of dumpster diving here are my top 10 tips to dumpster diving success.
If you’ve paid any attention to my work over the last years, have a Facebook account or pay any attention to media then you probably know that we’ve got a serious problem of food waste in the United States and around the world. I’ve dived into 1,000’s of dumpsters across America to show just how much perfectly good food is going to waste. My TEDx talk will catch you up on the issue from how much we’re wasting, to why it matters, and the solutions.
We’ve got a Food Waste Fiasco on our hands, America, and it’s time we solve it. But before diving into the solution, you must have a grasp on the depth of the problem. Here’s my TEDx talk that will make things pretty clear in under 20 minutes:
In the United States, we throw away nearly half of all the food we produce while 1 in 7 Americans are food insecure. To put it into other words, we produce enough food to feed 2 entire American populations, yet 50 million Americans are food insecure. To get your head wrapped around the issue give my TEDX talk a watch.
Every year in America we produce enough food to feed nearly two entire American populations, yet 50 million Americans go hungry. The face of hunger is not what you may expect and it is not the face of laziness. It is often your neighbor who seems to be doing just fine, a child too hungry to concentrate on their homework, or the elders who go unnoticed sitting at home without the money to purchase food. All of these people are going hungry while grocery stores alone throw away enough food to feed every single American in need. Together we CAN stop the waste and feed our fellow Americans. This three-minute video shows the problem:
I desire to put an end to food waste and hunger in America. Sure, it’s a lofty goal, a seriously lofty goal, but I believe that it is possible. In my youth, I see a time when every dumpster in America is completely void of all food. But in the mean time our dumpsters are full of perfectly good food and we may as well eat it! First and foremost, I encourage grocery stores to donate their excess food rather than throw it in the dumpster. But in the case of their social and environmental negligence, I encourage people to get out there, dive into dumpsters, eat the food, share the food, and raise awareness about food waste and hunger.
I want you to hit the dumpsters! Even if you don’t want to eat it or collect it for others I still encourage you to go see the waste for yourself.
Just a little over two years ago I called my first news station and told them about my adventure, Off the Grid Across America. I wanted them to come report and help me spread the word. Sure enough, they showed up. Since then I have cycled across the United States (twice) on a bamboo bicycle, went a year without showering, and dove into over a thousand dumpsters across America, all to inspire positive social and environmental change. Dozens of news stations all over the country have helped me to inspire more people than I will ever know. Now I live off the grid in a fifty-square-foot tiny home in San Diego, and they’re covering that too!
It all started with a few ideas. If I can do it, so can you.