Feeding the 5000 Comes to Austin

First food waste awareness event of its kind in Texas!

Austin,TX., September 12, 2017 —Austin Resource Recovery, Central Texas Food Bank, Keep Austin Fed and the Austin Chapter of the New Leaders Council are joining forces to bring Feeding The 5000, a food waste awareness event, to the south lawn of the Texas State Capitol on Oct. 19, 2017, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Feeding The 5000 was started by Feedback, a London-based organization working to reduce food waste. The goal is to serve 5,000 people a free meal made entirely from fresh ingredients that otherwise would have been wasted, exposing the level of food waste and celebrating the delicious solutions to help prevent it.

“Austin Resource Recovery is thrilled to be a part of this united front working to create awareness and find solutions to wasted edible food,” said Selene Castillo, Waste Diversion Planner with Austin Resource Recovery. “This event aligns with Austin’s Zero Waste goal and keeps valuable food out of landfills.”

Feeding The 5000 Austin will take place on the south lawn of the Texas State Capitol on Thursday, Oct. 19., a few days after World Food Day.  Everyone is invited to stop by and enjoy a delicious, free feast, sourced entirely from fresh top-quality food that would have otherwise been wasted.

With support from the City and in partnership with multiple non-profits, chefs and Austin business leaders, Austin’s Feeding The 5000 event will be the first in Texas and the first in the southwestern United States. With this event, Austin will join the ranks of cities such as London, New York and Sydney which have also hosted such events.

“Through cross-sector collaboration, we can achieve our goal to stop wasting food in Austin and beyond. This event is scalable, adaptable and best of all, it’ll be a lot of fun,” said Gena McKinley, Board Member for the New Leaders Council.

Recent research shows that the United States spends $218 billion per year growing, processing and transporting food that is never eaten. Up to 63 million tons of perfectly edible food ends up in American landfills each year–a terrifying number from a resource and greenhouse emissions perspective, but all the more galling in light of the roughly 49 million Americans who live in food insecure households.

“Globally, food waste is an obvious problem with obvious solutions, an issue with high economic, social and environmental costs but, thankfully, also lots of opportunities,” said McKinley. “This event will bring together organizations in our community to find creative solutions to get excess, edible food out of landfills and to hungry people.”

The community is invited to come listen to exciting speakers, learn more from local organizations working to prevent hunger and reduce waste while appreciating a delicious free lunch.  For more information on the event, including opportunities to volunteer, visit AustinTexas.Gov/Feeding5K.

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About Austin Resource Recovery
Austin Resource Recovery provides a wide range of services designed to transform waste into resources while keeping our community clean. Services include curbside collection of recycling, trash, yard trimmings and large brush and bulk items; street sweeping; dead animal collection; household hazardous waste disposal and recycling; and outreach and education. In December 2011, the Austin City Council approved the Austin Resource Recovery Master Plan, which is the City’s road map to Zero Waste. The City of Austin is committed to reducing the amount of waste sent to area landfills by 90 percent by 2040 or sooner.

About Central Texas Food Bank
The mission of Central Texas Food Bank is to nourish hungry people and lead the community in the fight against hunger. Founded in 1981, the Food Bank provides food and grocery products through a network of nearly 250 Partner Agencies and nutrition programs, serving nearly 46,000 people every week. Headquartered in Austin, the Food Bank serves 21 counties in Central Texas, an area about twice the size of Massachusetts. For more information on the Food Bank and its programs, visit centraltexasfoodbank.org.

About Feedback
Feedback is a nonprofit environmental organization working to end waste at every level of the food system. From its humble beginnings as a one-off event in London in 2009, Feedback’s flagship Feeding the 5000 event has grown into a global campaign, taking place in more than 40 cities around the world and catalyzing local and international efforts to end food waste.

About Keep Austin Fed
Keep Austin Fed is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that gathers wholesome and nutritious surplus food from commercial kitchens and distributes it to area nonprofits that serve people in need. The organization’s mission is to reduce hunger and help the environment by connecting surplus food and hungry neighbors.

About New Leaders Council – Austin
New Leaders Council (NLC) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that engages a diverse, collaborative national network of progressive political entrepreneurs. NLC is building a growing corps of new progressive leaders who will rise to the top of their fields and work together across sectors to build, expand, and improve the progressive infrastructure necessary for strong democracy, social justice, and equal opportunity.

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