Hungry Harvest, Honey!
Have you heard about Hungry Harvest? If you’re a Shark Tank fan, you might have seen them pitch their business back in 2015. Since then, they’ve grown quite a bit, so far saving 5 million pounds of food from ending up in a landfill. They have also donated 700,000 pounds of produce to organizations that help serve the hungry with reduced costs. In college I was the hippie who actually frequently went dumpster diving. This isn’t that. (And I don’t do that anymore.) They rescue produce that would be thrown out and sell it at a reduced cost. Why was the produce going to be thrown out? A whole lot of reasons, believe it or not. A lot of stores won’t sell produce that isn’t perfectly beautiful. They discriminate against ugly onions, small bell peppers, and really large zucchini. It’s not only that: stores also often order a surplus and what they know they won’t be able to sell gets tossed! Every year in the United States, 40% of food goes to waste! 20 billion pounds of that percentage is from produce that is lost on farms.
Here’s what Hungry Harvest has to say about it on their website:
“The injustice of wasting this much edible food when 20% in the US lack access to a nutritious diet is plenty reason to rescue this produce & mend a broken food system. But the impact of wasted food extends beyond our bellies. Almost a quarter of agricultural water is used to grow food that’s not eaten. We generate the equivalent greenhouse gas emissions of 1 in 7 cars by growing, shipping & processing uneaten food. Cutting food waste in half globally could reduce our ecological footprint by 16% & ensure a more sustainable future.”
“100 years ago, farmers could sell their entire harvest regardless of size, shape or superficial beauty of their produce. People understood that a small apple was as delicious as a large one, a misshapen carrot as nutrient-rich as any other. Today, demand for aesthetic perfection & homogeneity in produce makes whole-harvest selling impossible for farmers. 66,500 acres are left unharvested annually because produce doesn’t meet these arbitrary standards.
When you put that alongside the surplus created when our partner farmers have a better-than-expected growing season, you end up with an awful lot of produce that’s destined to go to waste. Leaving 20 billion pounds of produce in the field makes the already difficult business of farming nearly impossible.”
Read more at https://www.hungryharvest.net/#zDlOKi06VacK8RWx.99
They package up some of the “ugly”, off-size, or overproduced fruits and vegetables from the farm, packing house, and wholesalers into boxes called “harvest” and deliver them to your front door.
Here’s why I like it so much:
Not only are they reducing food waste, reducing landfill methane gases which come from non-composted food waste, supporting farmers, and helping provide to the hungry, but their boxes are incredibly affordable!
I strongly believe in the importance of organic farming. It protects and benefits the environment. It puts money in the pocket of the farmers and not just giant corporations. It allows for the land to be reworked season after season and doesn’t drain the soil of its nutrients leaving it unable to grow anything. It yields crops with a higher nutrient density than their conventional counterparts. Organic farming bans the use of harmful pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides, which lead to the death of bees who are vital to our food supply and the creation of superbugs that are immune to these chemicals. Organic produce is usually more expensive than conventional produce, that is true. Hungry Harvest has three different size organic harvest box options which allow you to buy organic produce at a fraction of the cost of the supermarket. The Mini Organic Harvest, the Full Organic Harvest, and the Super Organic Harvest. So, depending on how much you cook at home and how big your family is, you decide which size is best for you. You can get it weekly or less frequently. They send you an email with what will be in your box for the coming week and why it got rescued. This allows you to meal prep around your produce that you will be receiving and making a grocery list for anything else you need (or don’t need because it’s already covered in your box!) . They offer recipe ideas for several items and they’re quirky and cute.
This is not a sponsored post, I just think it’s a great company with a great cause and allows you to not break the budget while prioritizing organic produce.
Right now, Hungry Harvest delivers to Maryland, Virginia, DC, the Philadelphia area, southern New Jersey, North Delaware, South Florida, the triangle area of North Carolina, and they’re still expanding. If you’re on the West Coast, there’s a similar company called “Imperfect Produce”.
“No Produce Left Behind!”