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Freeganism - Dumpster Diving!

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Rulle_Kebab, Nov 21, 2011.

  1. Rulle_Kebab

    Rulle_Kebab Warlord

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    The past few weeks we have been collecting discarded food from the bins behind the supermarkets.
    And you'd be amazed at the amount of fresh food thrown out!
    With the stuff we have found we could easily sustain ourselves.
    How do you feel about all the food that is thrown out?
    We've found, to name a few things:
    (sometimes several kilos of each) apples, pineapples(that travelled all the way from central america to get thrown out), carrots, oranges, bananas, leeks, cantaloupes, bacon, chicken breasts, various breads, washing powder, milk, potatoes, dvds, salads, candlelights and toys.

    Here are some waste facts:
    8.3 million tonnes of food is thrown away by households in the UK annually

    40 percent of all the food produced in the US is thrown out

    Food is the third largest waste stream after paper and yard waste

    Consumers in North America and Europe waste about 209 to 253 pounds of food per person every year. The USDA says the average person in the U.S. eats 4.7 pounds of food per day. So that means the amount of food we each waste in the U.S. per year would feed us for about one and a half to two months (44 to 54 days to be exact).

    In North America and Oceania, 50 percent of the fish and seafood initially caught is wasted

    Globally, one-third of the food produced for human consumption is lost, about 1.3 billion tons.

    And this is all stuff that meets the standards, for example an apple has to be minimum 7.5 cm high to even be bought by the supermarkets, lettuce has to be 350 grams...
    Imagine all the food that doesnt meet these standards as well!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeganism


    Would you dive into dumpsters?
    Hows the freegans doing in your country?
     
  2. Singularity

    Singularity Infinite Density

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    I would never dive into a dumpster. But I try to consume in a manner that minimizes the waste that I produce. If more people thought like that there would be very little to scavenge for freegans.

    As long as the prices are low we don't give a damn. A toxic mudslide from a rare earth waste deposit in China kills 50-100 people, but that doesn't matter as long as we can get our latest models of IPads, cell phones and flatscreens to affordable prices. And all of those appliances have absolutely zero recycle value for those same rare earths that we've all become weaned to the giant teat called China. The old IPads and flatscreens are usually sent to a mountain of highly toxic waste somewhere in the third world(or the same countryside that house the rare earths waste deposits in China).
     
  3. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    Well, I wouldn't "dive" in although I've certainly made some nice finds from the trash. Most recently, a very beautiful lamp which I have on my kitchen counter (will post a pic later, remind me) and a whole bag on unused notebooks & markers.

    Fortunately, a lot of times people have the deceny to put stuff like that next to the dumpster rather than in it.

    Actually I found the computer desk I'm typing on now next to a dumpster too. It's in fine condition save a small piece of duct tape on the front.

    I also use Craigslist & Freecycle both to give away stuff & get stuff. I got a free men's bicycle about six months ago from a woman who was moving back to Italy with her husband & couldn't keep it. I'd estimate it's value @ about $300 (better than a Walmart bike, not as good as my $600 cannondale).

    Buying new furniture is ******** (assuming you live in a large, wasteful metropolitan area), except mattresses, I did buy my mattresses new.

    Not sure about the whole world but New York City has a freegan meetup (I haven't attended in over a year but I may again).

    I support freeganism 100%.
     
  4. puglover

    puglover Disturber of Worldviews

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    I don't think I would ever eat food I find in a dumpster, however my family has picked up some pretty decent furniture for free from the roadside before.
     
  5. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    I don't get why grocery stores and such don't donate all the food they can't sell to homeless shelters? Is it because they could be sued if somebody gets sick?
     
  6. dIZZyBlIZZy

    dIZZyBlIZZy Batteries not included

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    Pretty much. If it's still legal to sell, it's on the shelf, if it's not, they'd be just as liable if they gave it away.
     
  7. puglover

    puglover Disturber of Worldviews

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    Around here the organization Harvesters is one that collects leftover food from supermarkets, cakes that have not been sold for example. A group at my church volunteered to hand out food items with them to the poor.
     
  8. Disgustipated

    Disgustipated Deity

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    yup, they'd sue if they got sick (even if it wasn't the food that actually did it). Most of that food is at its expiration date and beyond.

    I noticed how much they threw out when I was a kid and use to hang out behind supermarkets. I was tempted as a kid to eat that food, but I never would. Canned products may be tempting to eat, however.
     
  9. Rulle_Kebab

    Rulle_Kebab Warlord

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    Yeah we dont look in peoples trash but the trash from supermarkets... and what we take is all before last sell by date... altho I eat it if I cant smell anything bad in it.
    I must say tho that we use the meat products to make dogfood for the dog and he loves it hehe.
    And we only take stuff that you know isn't rotten or squashed.
    Ill post a picture of the outcome of a trip to two dumpsters from this nite when I get the phone connected.

    Here atleast in Denmark the supermarkets throw out a lot of fresh food to make room for the new stuff when it arrives even tho it has got weeks till the sell by date.

    Ofcourse furniture and so on... I think only my bed and a closet is bought from new, the rest of the stuff is either found or bought second hand.

    I know a good spot as well for bread altho the baker donates most of it to a homeless shelter, there is often so much bread that I cant carry it hehe


    I think if it was something I had todo I wouldn't like it as much but it is a nice bonus and saves a penny or two while reducing the waste a bit.

    My next step is to get chickens somewhere... so I can feed them all my veggie waste and get some fresh eggs...
     
  10. Mr. Dictator

    Mr. Dictator A Chain-Smoking Fox

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    When I worked in the bakery at Sam's, part of my job was pulling all the stuff that needed to be pulled, then putting it in the compactor.

    Considering the sell by dates on stuff like that are a good few days before its actually bad, a lot of that stuff went "missing".

    Nothing was quite like seeing a marble cake with cream icing was going to be pulled that night.
     
  11. Rulle_Kebab

    Rulle_Kebab Warlord

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    Here is the catch of this nite :)
     
  12. dIZZyBlIZZy

    dIZZyBlIZZy Batteries not included

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    Those bananas are old dude.
     
  13. Rulle_Kebab

    Rulle_Kebab Warlord

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    Yeah they are a bit brown... but they are good in cakes or shakes/smoothies.
     
  14. Mr. Dictator

    Mr. Dictator A Chain-Smoking Fox

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    Look fine to me :confused:
     
  15. Zelig

    Zelig Beep Boop

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    I make enough money and care about how my home looks enough that it's less expensive to buy new furniture than to spend the time finding good used furniture.

    Best before dates have no legal status.
     
  16. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    It doesn't really take much time. Actually far less than driving to Ikea or Target. I find stuff all the time, everytime I empty my trash.

    I don't take anything ratty or dirty, like I said I'll post pics later.

    Oh, I did buy an industrial strength shelf at Costco for $50. My office chair was a gift, not technically a find. The bed I sleep in is really nice, my GF got it off C-list for $50 or $75 I think, it's really nice, with a headboard & lil' shelf in back.

    If I made enough not to care I'd still care cause I like having money for important stuff if I need it & furniture adds up. Anyone who's gonna be like "OMG, you table has a nick in it" isn't invited over anyway.

    Re : the banana debate, they look absolutely perfectly ripe. Green bananas are gross.

    Even if there's no way to legally screw someone who gave you food you claim made you sick it would still be bad publicity. Most companies nowadays seem pretty risk adverse when it comes to stuff like that. If the headline reads "Restaurant X's food made me sick said homeless guy", they won't think "Aw, how sweet", they'll think "I don't want to get sick too".
     
  17. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    BTW, a friend of mine used to dive in NYC. He'd hit up Food Emporium I think it was & get a lot of decent non-expired food & then to supplement his income he'd return some of it to Whole Foods or different Food Emporiums for store credit. Questionably moral probably & taking advantage of pretty generous return policy but he figured that's what places get for not making an effort to reduce waste (he couldn't get to Whole Foods dumpsters because they lock them).

    Oh, one recent dumpster diving story. I snagged a whole box of perfectly ripe bananas out of Trader Joe's dumpster. It's fenced in but I saw the box on top & was able to lift it over. A manager saw me & gave me crap but I just ignored him, let me say his little spiel and nodded & then went about my business (bought some lettuce & hummus & maple syrup).

    My GF froze about thirty bananas in the freezer, we ate a few, I gave some away in the city & about thirty or forty more went bad but better than them all going bad.

    People have very little respect for food in this country (I guess Europe too). I used to work at a restaurant & threw away pounds & pounds of food daily.
     
  18. dIZZyBlIZZy

    dIZZyBlIZZy Batteries not included

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    @Narz - Green bananas are gross, black bananas are revolting. Why I always buy mine in spurts, very small window of opportunity.
     
  19. Kyriakos

    Kyriakos Alien spiral maker

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    Unfortunately i see people searching and collecting from dumpsters EVERY DAY now.

    It used to be just one each month. Now it is 2-3 each day. And i live in a relatively good part of town...
     
  20. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    Those aren't black, they're ripe. A little yellow with some black spots is ripe.
     

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