Food destined for the landfill, but still safe to eat, will be turned into free, tasty meals at Feed 500 on Oct. 14, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Rotary Recreation Park.
The event to teach Red Deerians how they can reduce food waste at home and is being hosted by Kerry Wood Nature Centre with the help of Red Deer Food Bank, Rethink Red Deer, Alberta Health Services, the City of Red Deer, local grocery stores, producers, and others.
“It’s something that’s important for people to learn about and know because food waste is such a big environmental issue,” said Kathryn Huedepohl, program lead at Kerry Wood Nature Centre, and one of the event organizers.
The City of Red Deer held the community’s first Feed 500 in 2016 and this is a reboot, Huedepohl said.
“Our goal is to feed 500 people based on food that otherwise would have been added to the landfill. Come on out. Enjoy some free food. We’re hoping to make it an annual event.”
She said the chef-inspired meals will be made from food collected by the food bank but won’t reduce the food supply for food bank clients, which shows just how much food like this is available.
People who come out to Friday’s event can learn tips on how to reduce their food waste, like using the app Flashfood to access discounted food at Real Canadian Superstore and Wholesale Club that is nearing its best before dates or accessing surplus stock.
“I picked up a Flashfood order yesterday. I paid $13 and got the equivalent of about $40 worth of food. It’s a really good deal.”
Meal planning before shopping is another way to reduce the amount of food that ends up rotting in cupboards, she said.
Rotary Recreation Park was chosen as the site for Friday’s event because it’s a central location within walking distance for people in the downtown and accessible by city transit. The park is located north of the Golden Circle and east of the Bluegrass Sod Farms Spray & Play.
For more information about the event email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Kerry Wood Nature Centre at 403-346-2010. To volunteer, email email@example.com.
Support for the event comes from Rethink Red Deer’s Climate Leadership Lab, and the Community Environmental Action Grant.