Whether it’s fruit, vegetables, or dairy, there’s a lot of food waste in the United States each day. Luckily, many new food sharing apps are working to provide solutions!
The accessibility of technology in recent years has given way to a culture where everything is at our fingertips. Smartphones have made sharing culture easy, whether it’s a ride or a winter’s meal. And, food sharing is just one offshoot of the possibilities offered up! Unfortunately, approximately 150,000 tons of food is wasted each day, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). This means between 30-40% of food in the U.S. is wasted. This amount can impact everything from food security and conservation to the climate. While sharing food can be great for a good meal, it’s also an ideal way to tackle waste! So let’s have a look at how to share food with your neighborhood.
How to Food Share
Whether it’s social media or a ride with Uber, there are many different ways to share these days. As a result, it’s no surprise that the food-sharing economy is picking up steam! With so much food thrown away, many are looking for solutions that will reduce waste. Some food services are dedicated to sharing leftovers or providing a unique meal for locals. So using them can be an innovative way to get an inexpensive meal from an unknown local chef! However, others seek to pair extra food from producers and retailers with non-profits. Not only can food sharing fight hunger, but it’s also more environmentally friendly too! So no matter your reason for food sharing, it’s a great way to save money, reduce waste, and eat delicious food.
What Are the Downsides of Food Sharing?
There may be many conveniences that go along with the trend of sharing food, but some of these startup apps have some downsides. Many apps have disappeared quickly since they were not subject to governing laws. They might not regulate the kitchens but instead check on restaurants’ food handling certification, phone interviews, and customer reviews.
The hope is that as more and more people start food sharing and leaving reviews, they’ll help separate the good from the bad. It’s important to be aware, though, that many contributors might not be compliant with food regulations. So consumers run the risk of receiving food that has already spoiled. Unfortunately, this means they may not be qualified for commercial food activities.
What Are Some Great Food Sharing Apps?
Risks aside, food sharing remains a fantastic option to enjoy delicious cuisine while also reducing global food waste? Here are our top picks for food-sharing apps.
- Too Good to Go: With over 40 million users, 500 schools, and 75,000 businesses using its platform, Too Good to Go has greatly impacted reducing food waste! After downloading the app, users can connect with many of their favorite local restaurants and receive a bag of meals or basic ingredients at a fraction of the normal price. So users can save money, eat delicious food, and help the planet!
- Olio: When it comes to wasted food, Olio is at the top of its game. Instead of local bakeries discarding products like bread and bagels, they are picked up and posted on Olio. Started in 2015, the project has nearly 5 million participants in 50 countries who have shared over 27 million portions of food! Many app users have incomes below the poverty line, making it philanthropic and food-waste friendly. In addition to sharing food, Olio users also share other household goods.
- Food Rescue US–Food Rescue US is another great app that has been reducing food waste in the United States since 2011. This app connects people who need food with organizations that have a surplus. So it’s very easy for those who donate, deliver, and provide food to find each other! If you’re a restaurant or grocer, you can list the food you’d like to donate. Then, a driver can deliver it to an agency or food pantry looking for that item!
The sharing culture has become an important part of how people provide and access services in recent years. It helps to bridge the gap between those who have an abundance and those who have significant needs. It’s also a wonderful way to forge meaningful connections as we can share new experiences through food and family.
Whether companies are looking for ways to reduce food waste or families are looking for a homemade entrée, food sharing apps can help bring communities together. Do you all have any favorite food sharing apps? Let us know on social #getfamilyapp!