Free Shopping Market Sells Surplus Food

The best things in life are free, or so they say. People like Katryna Robinson are making the most of hotel freebies by donating them to the needy. Now, a free shopping market in New Zealand is cutting food waste (and hunger) by selling surplus food.

The Free Store is a nonprofit organization that redistributes surplus food from local businesses… to those in need. It was inspired by a two-week art project… where artist Kim Paton filled a shop with surplus food items from bakeries and supermarkets. Anyone visiting the shop could take what they wanted free of charge.

In New Zealand, the amount of food that goes to waste is staggering at over 120,000 tons. Just like a similar shop in Norway, The Free Store redistributes expired food still fit for a perfectly good meal. At present, they are selling about 250,000 food items per annum.

“We saw the potential in an untapped food supply. You had food that was perfectly good to eat, and then you had people that were hungry. We could facilitate a connection between the two,”

Initiatives such as this one are becoming increasingly popular around the world. While I’m all for consuming anything “spoiled but scrumptious”, I am more enthusiastic about how things are looking up for those in need.

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Trapped Houston Bakers Bake Bread For Flood Victims

For the most part, I think people are inherently good. After all, gathering with strangers to save a drowning family or planting a tree every single day for 12 years is more than just intuition. With Hurricane Harvey on a full rampage, people have demonstrated as utmost selflessness towards others. These Houston bakers trapped in El Bolillo Bakery spent 48 hours baking bread for flood victims while waiting for rescue.

The workers used 4,400 pounds of flour to prepare hundreds of loaves of bolillos, kolaches and pan dulce for storm victims. As Harvey raged on, they found motivation in the good their work would do for the community. “They knew it was going to be needed,”

Luckily, despite floodwaters seeping in through the bakery doors, El Bolillo never lost power. Immediately after owner Kirk Michaelis evacuated staff, he personally delivered the baked goods to shelters across Houston.

“We’re not anything compared to some of the people out there working and doing amazing things,” Michaelis said. “We’re just doing our little part.”

I don’t know about you, but I’d call Michaelis and his staff pretty heroic.

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