As the recognition grows across communities, governments and businesses that food waste is no longer tenable and its economic, social and environmental impacts are no longer justifiable, initiatives that seek to tackle the issue have been springing up globally. By reducing food waste at the farm level, this organisation tackles the problem at the source.
One third of all food produced is wasted globally every year, along with numerous resources used in its production (such as fresh water, land, energy, capital), and the unnecessary greenhouse gases (such as some 23 per cent of all methane emissions) that are also generated, contributing to climate change.
In the process, precious resources are therefore being squandered every year, resources that shouldn’t need to be used in the first place. In the US alone, due to strict aesthetic specifications at the retail level, some 20 billion pounds of perfectly edible and nutritional produce are wasted every year, before they have even left the farm.
These are not just wasted resources, with serious environmental implications, but a wasted income opportunity for farmers.
Full Harvest is a B2B platform that connects large farms to food retailers, effectively creating an online market place for perfectly edible ‘surplus’ foods to be sold at discounted prices to food retailers. Ugly potatoes, deformed carrots, irregularly shaped courgettes. You name it. Full Harvest values them all, and seeks to promote their value across the supply chain.
By selling ‘ugly’ produce at discounted prices to food retailers, farmers get an additional revenue stream from what would have otherwise been thrown away, their production costs are therefore lowered, and wasted food and use of resources are significantly reduced at the source. Food retailers are too set to gain, by securing savings though the discounted purchasing of fruit and vegetables.
Lastly, at the consumer level, the initiative can also help change the image of ‘uglies’ and help them find a way to people’s hearts (and stomachs) one again. What’s not to like?
Here’s a short video about the ecological footprint of food waste: