Activist Eats Trash to Prove How Much Food We Waste

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Our trash is Rob Greenfield’s food.

Greenfield, an environmental activist, traveled around the country eating food he found in dumpsters, edible food products such as pre-packaged salads, fresh fruit and ice cream. But Greenfield didn’t do it to prove that he could eat foods after their ‘sell by’ dates and not get sick. Rather, the video is a demonstration of how much food we waste in the country. More than 30 percent of food in the U.S. ends up in the trash.


“We do not have a shortage of food in the United States,” Greenfield said in the video. “The only thing we have is a distribution problem. The food is here, we’re just not giving it to people in the right way.”

Ok, so watching Greenfield talk about eating expired yogurt and drinking expired milk is kind of cringe-inducing (even though you can usually eat foods up to a week after their sell-by date, it’s still a little uncomfortable to watch). But the bottom line is that Greenfield has a point. We know that we waste about $167 billion in food each year, and the footage of pounds and pounds of food sitting in dumpsters shows how real that food waste is and what it looks like.