College Park, MD (PRWEB) November 15, 2012
The members of the Food Recovery Network (FRN) launched their first national campaign, "More Students. Less Waste.”. The goal of the campaign is threefold: 1) reach 10,000 students through social media; 2) sign up 200 new volunteers; and 3) have 10 students pledge to start a new chapter at their school.
Currently, FRN donates surplus food from campus dining halls to people in need of a meal at 10 different colleges, including: Univeristy of Maryland, Brown University, UC Berkley, Pomona College, The Rhode Island School of Design, Providence College, University of Texas-Austin, and the Claremont schools of Scripps, Harvey-Mudd, and Claremont McKenna. Founded just over a year ago, the organization has donated over 92, 120 lbs of food to local food banks and charities.
Independent research by the organization has demonstrated that college campuses in America waste about 22 millions pounds of food a year. This food heads to the landfill, producing methane gas, a greenhouse gas that is 20 times more harmful than carbon dioxide. This wasted food also leads to environmental and economical losses, most of which are preventable.
During the “More Students. Less Waste.” campaign, FRN members want to raise awareness about the food waste phenomenon across as many campuses as possible, and get more students to join the network. The math is simple, 1 in 6 Americans suffers from hunger, but not because there is lack of food. Hunger persists in America due to lack of proper redistribution of this food, and FRN aims to address just that.
Food Recovery Network has made much progress in this area since its foundation. One of its major achievements includes its partnership with the Montgomery County Council. Inspired by the work of the organization, Councilmember Valerie Ervin wanted to create a similar network on the county level, known as the Food Recovery Work Group. The implementation group includes FRN’s Founder, UMD senior Ben Simon, and around 20 other top stakeholders, and is tasked with creating a county-wide food recovery program based on the success of FRN.
“Food Recovery Network couldn’t be more excited to partner with the Montgomery County Council to recover more food in the county,” said Simon. “Montgomery County generated 28,000 tons of non-residential food waste in 2011, so if we can even donate one percent of that, we’ll make a difference in the lives of countless residents.”
The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 70 billion pounds of food is wasted each year in the United States, amounting to about 40% of the food grown in America. Meanwhile, 49 million Americans struggle with food insecurity, according to the Census.
With the holiday season around the corner, FRN hopes the campaign will get more students aware about the food waste problem our nation is facing, and spark an interest among students to get involved.
Such a network of student volunteers and dedicated FRN staff, ensures that more Americans are fed on a daily basis, rather than countless trash cans and landfills across the U.S.A..
The Food Recovery Network unites students at colleges and universities across America to fight food waste and hunger by recovering surplus perishable food from their college campuses and surrounding communities that would otherwise go to waste and donating it to people in need. http://www.foodrecoverynetwork.org