Where Surplus Finds Purpose
In Kansas City, 1 in 8 people face food insecurity. Meanwhile, 40% of ALL food produced in the United States ends up in a landfill - an estimated 65 million tons of food waste per year. This costs our country 165 billion dollars annually while drastically increasing fossil fuel emissions and freshwater consumption. One of our own UMKC members who worked in the UMKC cafeteria noticed the extent of food waste in our own backyard and brought this challenge to the team.
Rather than seeing these challenges as roadblocks though, we saw them as opportunities. At the intersection of these two needs, we used creativity and innovation to craft a solution! We connected with local food vendors like the UMKC cafeteria to take safe and nutritious food to local food banks instead of the landfill.
After implementing our service at UMKC, we have reduced our food waste by more than 700 lbs per semester. That's 700 lbs of food directly translating into dollars saved for their bottom line in just 4 months.
After experiencing success with our manual recovery process, we decided that in order to ensure the sustainability of the project, we would need something to automate these recoveries. Introducing the FeedKC website!