Food waste is a huge problem in the United States with millions of pounds of food each day ending up in the garbage. According to Too Good to Go, a mobile app that aims to wipe out food waste, 40% of food waste is edible when it ends up in the trash.
What makes this even more unfortunate is that millions of people in our country go to bed hungry each night or find themselves with too many days left in the month and not enough food in the pantry. According to the USDA, 10.5% of Americans experienced food insecurity in 2020.
Texas isn’t immune from food insecurity either. In fact, 1 in 4 families in the Texas Hill Country has had to worry about putting food on the table.
Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could reduce our food waste, secure food for more people struggling with food insecurity, and help our planet at the same time? This isn’t an unrealistic dream but is an achievable goal that all Texans can get behind.
In 2011, Austin set out to reduce its landfill waste by 90% by 2040. Recycling and compost programs were set in place, but it was also about scaling back what is used or goes unused, to begin with.
With folks in the Texas Hill Country wasting over 450 million pounds of food a year, Too Good to Go is helping not just Austin reach its goal but cities around the world.
Too Good to Go is Reducing Food Waste One Download at a Time
As mentioned, Too Good to Go is a mobile app with the aim of eliminating food waste. Users download the app on their iOS or Android device which connects them with restaurants or grocery stores that have a surplus of food that might otherwise go to waste if it’s not purchased. Customers then reserve and pay for the items available that day from the establishment and pick them up at the participating location’s closing time.
Too Good to Go currently works with 75,000 food establishments and has been downloaded over a million times since its launch in 2020. So far, its developers estimate some 500,000 meals have been saved just in the United States alone!
Our very own Le Muse coffee shop recently joined the Too Good to Go app, so the next time you’re craving Juan’s famous tamales, tacos, and more, hop on the app and see what you can pick up for an easy, free meal!
Other Ways to Reduce Food Waste at Home
Texans can also help to reduce the food that ends up in the trash in their own homes as well. Meal planning before heading to the grocery store can help to ensure you don’t buy too much food that may spoil before you can use it.
Another big part of reducing food waste is simply finding new ways to use food that may otherwise go to waste. For example, Austin chef Sarah Heard recommends using leftover mashed potatoes to make a new meal with gnocchi. Coffee grounds can be turned into red-eye gravy and carrot tops can be transformed into chimichurri.
With a little creativity and effort, we can all help to reduce food waste, one tasty meal at a time.
Connect with the Caliterra team to learn more about this community and our home builders.