Did you ever go out to dinner and eat so much bread that you were unable to finish your main course when it finally arrived? Maybe you wanted to take it home, but you were going somewhere after and didn’t want the food to sit in the car, so you just let the waitress take it away. Or maybe you did take it home, but the leftovers sat in your fridge for two days before you finally tossed it. And every parent I know has cringed while scraping a half-eaten plate of food into the garbage. “There are children starving in the world.” What a waste.
Approximately 40% of the food grown in the US is never eaten.
Rust Belt Riders, a northeast Ohio organic waste removal service, is now offering Northeast Ohio businesses, schools, and restaurants a solution to the American food-wasting epidemic. Their mission is “to create wealth from waste through the conversion of waste food into value added products.” Their philosophy is to feed people, not landfills by turning food waste into compost to be used, for example, in community gardens and urban farming efforts. The small but mighty social enterprise began two years ago, transporting food waste via bicycles. Founders Daniel Brown and Michael Robinson have since moved to using vehicles to haul much larger amounts of food waste, approximately 10,000 lbs per week, with 50 corporate accounts, including University Hospitals.
Their latest venture is to bring a mobile classroom to neighborhoods throughout Cleveland to teach the community about alternatives to wasting food. Working with Cleveland Neighborhood Progress and their Climate Ambassadors as well as RSELVES’ ICAN 2 Lab, RBR hopes to have the first ICAN 2 Lab ready to deploy in May 2017. RBR needs to raise approximately $10,000 to get these mobile classrooms, well, mobile. The ICAN 2 Labs need to be repaired and retrofitted, and sites need to be prepared. In addition, RBR needs to develop educational materials and workshops, as well as secure necessary permits.
Here’s where you come in. It’s time for you to “flip out” over food waste. The company is hosting a fundraising event called “Flip Out Over Food Waste” at the Superelectric Pinball Parlor on November 10 from 7pm to 11pm. Located at 6500 Detroit Ave, this family-friendly event includes a silent auction, a 50/50 raffle, and of course, pinball. A small donation of $20 earns you free pinball all evening. Come out and play for a good cause!
Purchase tickets or make a donation here.