Rob WKOW

Donating Every Last Dollar to End Food Waste

Over the last three days I’ve been Dumpster Diving Across Wisconsin to raise awareness about our massive food waste issue here in the United States. Previous to this adventure I’ve been Dumpster Diving Across the USA for a year and a half so I expected this week to be a pretty standard for me. I also expected my home state of Wisconsin to do a good job of not wasting food.

But I’ve been completely blown away by what I’ve found in the supermarket dumpsters. Every dumpster I have opened has been FULL of perfectly good food. In a front page La Crosse Tribune story I did a few days ago, I confidently said, “If there’s a dumpster, there’s food in itand so far I have proved that to be right time and time again. In just three days of biking across Wisconsin living purely on dumpster food, I have found tens of thousands of dollars worth of food. All of this at a time when 1 in 7 Americans is food insecure. This waste of food is also a huge waste of water, fossil fuels, energy, and landfill space and is a root cause to many of the world’s most pressing issues.

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Dumpster Diving Across Wisconsin

Dumpster Diving Across Wisconsin!

Dumpsters in the United States are full of perfectly good food, and my childhood friend Dane Gottschall and I are out to show this by bicycling across Wisconsin fueled 100% by food we find in dumpsters.

This might sound crazy, but what’s even more nuts is that we throw away $165 billion worth of food each year in the United States. This is slightly more than we spend on our entire public education system from kindergarten through university. All of this while 1 in 7 Americans are food insecure.
We’re going to show you that there is so much food in Wisconsin’s dumpsters that we can cycle clear across the state powered by these supermarket treasure chests. Through this adventure we promise to inform you on the food waste problem in the United States in an entertaining and inspirational manner while giving simple tips on how you can be a part of the solution.

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Dumpster Diving Rob Greenfield

21 Gourmet Dumpster Meals

Imagine living a week solely on food from supermarket dumpsters and turning that food waste into healthy, gourmet meals. That’s exactly what Brian Blum and I will do with the 21 Gourmet Dumpster Meals project this week, focusing attention on the amount of food that goes to waste in our country (estimated at $165 billion annually) while providing tips people can use to eat ethically, healthy, andsustainably. Proving we can eat more deliciously and nutritiously than the average American solely off food we find tossed in dumpsters, we will also fill an entire fridge and a few cupboards, provide food to people on the streets and make a huge meal for friends and the public! 

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Food: How I cycled 4700 miles eating food from the Earth

Food (2 of 12)

4,700 miles of riding over 104 days eating food from the earth (plus a whole bunch from the dumpster).

The goal: To cross the USA by bicycle while keeping my carbon footprint from food consumption to an extreme minimum.

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Back on the slab and full of junk food: Day 75

Which of these did I not eat today? 07/03 (Day 75)

-A box of Granola bars from the CVS dumpster

-A ready in the box microwaveable Thai noodle dish from the CVS dumpster

-A can of clam chowder soup (sell by date- 10/11) from a dumpster outside Subway

-7 star shaped custard filled donuts from the Dunkin’ Donuts dumpster

-Miscellaneous bagels and bread rolls from the Dunkin’ Donuts dumpster

-Handpicked black raspberries from the roadside

-A nutty bar found on the side of the road

-A jar of peanut butter found in an abandoned house with a 2008 expiration (still sealed)

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Hello Wisconsin: Day 50

06/08 (Day 50)

I woke up to another morning of being overly exhausted but was quite excited for what was to come. It was 6:30 and the sky was not completely covered with clouds although I can’t say it was quite sunny. I was on the road around 7:30 and hit up the Dubuque farmers market on my way eastward. I was amazed to see the streets covered with booths selling local food, crafts, and goods. Dubuque amazed me again today with its excitement for local culture and with their excitement about creating a healthy planet. My host Rob from Dubuque Bike Coop was set up down there and I learned about some of the great stuff they are doing. They make it easy for anyone to own a bike. For around $75 you can get a solid used ride. You can even use a bike for 3 months with a deposit that will be returned when you return the bike. 

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