Despite the rain, the second annual food rescue event, Feeding the 5000 (F5KYYC), was a huge success thanks to community partners and supporters. F5KYYC provided a free lunch to Calgarians on June 14 while teaching attendees about food waste. The event served 7500 portions of food and saved over 700 kg of food from the landfill.
The event included free food, cooking demonstrations, community tables and a station to pledge to reduce food waste. Grant funding for the event was received from Alberta EcoTrust and Community Natural Foods.
Chefs from restaurants across Calgary created an amazing feast including Poplar Bluff Organics potato salad, rescued fruit lemonade, great white northern bean salad, Mediterranean vegetable salad, and bread pudding. They also made a special giveaway item, a chocolate chip cookie made from spent grains from Banded Peak Brewing, Highwood Crossing organic flours and Cococo Chocolate.
"We'd like to thank all the companies who donated food," remarked head chef Andrew Hewson. "We couldn't have held the event without their contributions and through their efforts we created awareness about local food waste prevention."
The Guild provided the kitchen to prepare all the food in the week leading up to the event and LeftOvers donated the use of their truck to ship the food to Olympic Plaza and deliver the leftovers to other charities after the event.
"All of the remaining food from the event went to the Alpha House and the Dream Centre and the food was incorporated into the dinner servings that night," remarked Rob Ironside from LeftOvers YYC. "I spoke with the kitchen staff at both locations and they were thrilled to be serving nutritious and fresh food to their clients and passed on their gratitude."
Over 100 volunteers helped in a variety of roles during the week from kitchen prep to serving and public education about food waste at the event.
The event wouldn't be complete without demos from local celebrity chefs. Chef Scott Shackleton whipped together a stuffed french toast, Julie Van Rosendaal shared her recipe for panzanella salad and Maria Koutsogiannis wowed the crowd with cauliflower rice with sweet potato and coconut sauce.
The public who attended had an opportunity to visit a variety of community booths including Fair Trade Calgary, the Arusha Centre, Alternate Root, Alex Food Centre, Green Calgary, Plastic Free YYC, Grow Calgary, YYC Growers, Community Natural Foods, LeftOvers YYC and the City of Calgary Waste & Recycling and Water Services.
For more information on F5KYYC: https://recycle.ab.ca/f5kyyc/.
The City of Calgary is leading the community towards zero waste through innovative recycling, composting and diversion programs. The City's goal is to divert 70 per cent of waste from City landfills by 2025.
LeftOvers Calgary is an organization that rescues food from being thrown in the garbage, and ensure it gets to service agencies in need. In Calgary, 23,165 households live in poverty* (with income less than $20,000 and spending more than 50% of their income on shelter). For more information on LeftOvers Calgary, visit: www.rescuefood.ca.
The Recycling Council of Alberta (RCA)'s was also involved in this program. The RCA's mission is to promote and facilitate waste reduction, recycling, and resource conservation in the Province of Alberta. Through a consultative approach and support of the RCA members and partners (i.e., government, industry, stewardship organizations and other associations) and additional stakeholders, the RCA will pursue protection of the environment through resource conservation following the 3Rs hierarchy. Visit: www.recycle.ab.ca.