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Faith Fights Food Waste Launched
Food Waste Weekend relaunched as Faith Fights Food Waste Enabling
Clergy of All Faiths To Give Food Waste Sermons Throughout Year
Newfoundland NJ – (Oct 15, 2020) – Faith Fights Food Waste (#FaithFightsFoodWaste) – a global opportunity for the faith community to learn about and address the waste of food – has been announced by AmpleHarvest.org as part of the World Food Day.
In response to feedback from the faith leaders and more importantly, people of faith, the program now called Faith Fights Food Waste, was revised for use at any time of the year. More importantly, in a COVID-19 world where most people are practicing their faith at home instead of a house of worship, we added the capacity for these individuals to also benefit regardless of if they are at home or in a communal space.
America alone wastes a staggering $218 billion worth of food every year, and on a global scale, the UN estimates that 1.3 billion tons of food worth more than $1 trillion is lost to waste every year. This exacerbates other critical issues including hunger, climate change, the environment and diet related diseases. While a great deal of money is spent trying to deal with these issues individually, it is easier and less expensive to reduce a major root cause – the waste of perfectly wholesome and edible food.
According to AmpleHarvest.org’s founder and executive director Gary Oppenheimer, “for the past 10 years, an increasing number of ‘foodies’, non-profits, government officials and others have been seeking to tackle the issue of food waste.”
In 2016, AmpleHarvest.org launched a program called Food Waste Weekend, to educate and then enable clergy of all faiths (Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Unitarian-Universalists, and non-sectarian spiritual) to give sermons that were created on the waste of food. These sermons were designed in partnership with Greenfaith, to help the faith leaders and their followers learn about the issue from their own faith perspective, about food waste.”
In the launch of the original Food Waste Weekend program, clergy nationwide were enthusiastic about the event with Rev. Jacob Bolton of New York noting that “Food Waste Weekend addresses the complex, global issue of food waste and overconsumption, with tangible, local, and spiritually cultivating practices any faith community can undertake. The possibilities surrounding this weekend are sundry and full of hope. This is the invitation faith communities have been looking for.” His sentiments were echoed by Rabbi Joshua Ratner from Connecticut: “I think this is a fantastic, modern opportunity for people of all faiths to actualize the biblical injunction to share the gleanings of our fields with those in need. Donating our food surplus, rather than throwing it away, is something we can all be proud of. I hope all houses of worship of all faiths will participate.”
Information about the issue of food waste, faith-specific sample sermons, newsletter bulletins and more are available at FaithFightsFoodWaste.org. Clergy and people of faith can choose from variety of “calls to action” based on the type of engagement most appropriate to the community. Examples include using shopping lists to reduce the impulse buying of food that may never get consumed, finding a nearby food pantry at AmpleHarvest.org that’s eager for excess garden produce, or even helping their employer find ways to reduce food waste in the office or cafeteria.
“Our goal is to help all members of the faith community learn about food waste solutions.” noted Oppenheimer. “Solving food waste helps to reduce hunger and malnutrition and helps the environment as it reduces the waste stream, climate change, and the loss of water and energy used to grow/produce and ship the food”.
Key beneficiaries of Faith Fights Food Waste are food pantries nationwide that, thanks to AmpleHarvest.org, will be able to receive food, especially locally grown food, that otherwise would have been lost to waste.
AmpleHarvest.org, Inc. is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization which works to diminish food waste and hunger in America by educating, encouraging and empowering growers to easily find a local food bank eager to receive the excess garden bounty. Follow AmpleHarvest.org at twitter.com/AmpleHarvest and at Facebook.com/AmpleHarvest.org. For more information, visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/presskit or call AMPLE-6-9880 (267-536-9880).
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