WellesleyWeston Magazine


Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

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Page 149 of 227

While some unavoidable loss occurs due to harsh weather or spoil- age, the costs associated with food waste are huge. According to the EPA, more than 130 million pounds of food ends up in our nation's landfills. Solid food that rots in landfills emits methane gas, which has a "global warming potential" 28 to 36 times that of carbon dioxide in a 100-year period. Also, resources used to grow, process, transport, store, and dis- pose of the excess food, like water, soil nutrients, and fossil fuels, are wasted. In financial terms, Bloom reports a family of four throws away an average over $2,000 worth of food a year. At the same time, the 2017 Global Report on Food Crisis finds over 100 million people worldwide are food insecure, or lack reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. Feeding America, a Chicago-based nonprofit that works to end hunger in the U.S., esti- mates that 41 million Americans live in households that don't have enough food to live an active, healthy life. Of that, 23 million are adults, 13 million are children, and 5 million are seniors. Fortunately, Matt Delaney, Wellesley's food service director since 2012, is aware of this serious and pervasive problem and is working with Wellesley's 3R (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) Working Group (Department of Public Works, Natural Resources Commission, and Sustainable Energy Committee) and volunteers across town to tackle it. "In 1992, I learned about food recovery when I worked in food ser- vice management at Walt Disney World," notes Delaney. "Extra food prepared at restaurants and resorts was bagged, tagged, and chilled. At night, a refrigerated truck picked it up and brought it to a food bank and people in shelters." The work in Florida made a big impression on Delaney. "It raised my awareness of hardship and hunger that I never knew existed. Not to mention, the environmental impacts such as water wasted to produce food, greenhouse gasses, and lost money on purchased food from the suppliers." Delaney felt Wellesley Middle School (WMS) would be a perfect test facility or "proving ground" for food recovery here. A plan to put that in place came about at a February 2016 meeting of the Town's 3R Working Group. At the end of lunch service, staff members put extra pre-consumer cooked meals in sealed, plastic bags, and transferred them to a freezer. On Fridays, Wendy Beck von Peccoz volunteered to pick up the food and deliver it to the Wellesley Food Pantry (WFP). Items that couldn't Chef Manager at WMS Danny Vieira prepares food for pickup by Food For Free P H O T O S B Y M A T T D E L A N E Y 148 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | s p r i n g 2 0 1 8 good works "41 million Americans live in households that don't have enough food"

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