As part of the Food Recovery Network, 34 colleges and
universities are feeding the hungry in their communities.
A number of college students and alums are rethinking how we eat, distribute and think about our food this Thanksgiving.
And it comes at a time when Americans throw out the equivalent of $165 billion of food each year and 40% of food in America goes uneaten, according to a 2012 report from the Natural Resources Defense Council, nonprofit environmental organization.
As part of the Food Recovery Network, 34 colleges and universities are feeding the hungry in their communities.
Collectively, schools in the Food Recovery Network have donated more than 222,000 pounds of food since September 2011.
Recover Rochester has done outreach this year and grown its community to 30 members, according to Wai Hon Chan, president of the chapter at Rochester Institute of Technology.
The group has donated 15,000 pounds of food and wants to expand to other universities — as well as establishing its own facility.
“It’s a dream for us to have a facility serving strictly over production of food from restaurants, college dining halls and retails.”
For three years, Denison University’s Homelessness and Hunger committee had been recovering food from their campus halls and donating it. A chapter of the Food Recovery Network at Denison was formed this month.
In Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan’s chapter won $1,074 recently at Ann Arbor SOUP, an event that offers grant opportunities for projects in Ann Arbor.
In the startup world, the community members of Feast , an online cooking school founded by David Spinks, 2009 graduate of SUNY Geneseo, are exchanging ideas for what to cook on Thanksgiving or “Thanksgivukkah” this week.
“For a lot of our students it’ll be the first time they cook for their families on Thanksgiving with their new kitchen skills, so it’s an exciting time for them.”
Feast will teach members to utilize ingredients in different ways so ingredients do not go to waste.
If everyone in this world cooked, waste would be greatly decreased because people would make the correct portions and start to care about food issues in general, says Spinks.
Some students agree that food and hunger issues are not emphasized enough.
Simone Wilson, senior at Emory University, says that events and initiatives geared toward fighting hunger should happen throughout the year, not just over the holiday season.
Ally Rooker, junior at University of Michigan, agrees, explaining that there although there are some, there aren’t enough events striving to fight hunger at her campus.
“I think it’d be good to see more events like that and more education about global hunger and how it affects people differently in different parts of the world.”