As consumers of local food, we place an enormous importance on where it comes from. But what about where it ends up? A study released last week by the National Resources Defense Council reveals that roughly 40 percent of food in the United States goes uneaten. Broken down in a recent article by The Atlantic, that's $165 billion worth of food per year and about 20 pounds of wasted food per person every month.
A statewide study released earlier this month by the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources that reveals North Carolina businesses and residences waste 1.1 million tons of food per year.
Durham author Jonathan Bloom will appear at Meredith College in Raleigh on Thursday, Aug. 30, at 7 p.m., to discuss his book American Wasteland, which was published in 2010. The book details Bloom's research, which, since 2005 has focused on our country's wasteful food habits in contrast to the increasing number of people who lack enough food to eat.
On his blog, www.wastedfood.com, Bloom chronicles his research with up-to-date posts on statistics related to food waste and hunger. He also suggests ways consumers and businesses can address the issue.
"When you're looking for it, you see food waste everywhere—at restaurants, in large portions and even in your own refrigerator," Bloom observes. "If more and more people recognize their own food waste, we can take a bite out of this problem."
For more information about Bloom's appearance at Meredith, and to reserve a ticket, visit nutritionmc.wordpress.com.
The baker's cooperative Bread Uprising started in 2010, serving 35 families weekly in Durham without outside donations or grant funding. Now the community-supported bakery wants to expand. It has launched a crowd-funding campaign: indiegogo.com/breaduprising.
"Bread Uprising is an example of the world that I want to live in," says bakery member Carly Campbell. "I'm so excited about this fundraising campaign because it will make it possible for the bakery to provide not just more yummy bread but also sustainable, dignified jobs."
Three main bakers make up the core team. The weekly bread shares are based on a pay-what-you-can scale. Bread Uprising's website, breaduprising.wordpress.com, says that at least 60 percent of its members are people of color, "and there is priority membership for anyone who does not have consistent access to food."
Bread Uprising slips homemade zines into the plastic bread sleeves. The literature, published in English and Spanish, serves as a community newsletter for CSB members. It includes in-depth essays related to food justice and a calendar of activist events, including workshops the bakery hosts.
The campaign, which ends Sept. 20, has a $10,000 fundraising goal; funds will be used for baker salaries and equipment purchases.
Know of a restaurant happening or food event? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.