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Students with the Knox Food Recovery Network rescue leftover food from the Hard Knox Cafe for donation. #

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Ford Center for the Fine Arts

Weigh the Waste Raises Awareness of Food Waste on Campus

November 23, 2016

Students with the Knox Food Recovery Network rescue leftover food from the Hard Knox Cafe for donation.

by Phoebe Billups '19

The Food Recovery Network (FRN) launched its second Weigh the Waste campaign earlier this fall, creating a visual representation of the food waste Knox College students produce over one week.

The primary goal of the campaign is to raise awareness of food waste on campus and make students more conscious of their choices. "The idea is that this is something we can change about our everyday lives and feel as though we are making some sort of difference," Meryl Davis '19, a student with the FRN, explained.

Members of the FRN chapter were posted in the Hard Knox Cafe at lunch and dinner each day. They asked students to scrape leftover food into a bucket on a scale, resulting in a visual measure of post-consumer waste. During fall term, they collected 340 pounds of waste from students who agreed to scrape their plates.

The biannual event allows the FRN to compare post-consumer waste at the start and end of the school year. The campaign also provides useful feedback to Knox Dining Services.

Weigh the Waste was fully realized last spring, when members of the Knox FRN attended the National Food Recovery Dialogue in Maryland. There are currently 93 chapters of the organization in 43 states. At the dialogue, Knox students had the opportunity to exchange ideas and strategies with other chapters.

In addition to the Weigh the Waste campaign, the Knox Recovery Network rescues food from dining areas that would normally be wasted and donates it to local organizations like the Galesburg Rescue Mission, Safe Harbor Family Crisis Center, and Moon Tower subsidized housing apartments. The group donates between 100 and 200 pounds of food each day.

Photo at top of page: Food Recovery Network students gather food to be taken to local organizations.

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Printed on Sunday, February 26, 2017

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