Veggie Rescue @ Little India

Our project rescues discarded fresh produce from shopkeepers in Little India, and delivers them to a soup kitchen for cooking and serving to low-income families.

I started my food waste journey by asking my neighbours to give me their leftover cooked food, and expired food products for my personal consumption. As a result, I spent only $8 on food this year.

Then I read that Singapore produced 791,000 tonnes of food waste last year. I got curious about the waste generated in the food distribution channels, and started to move up the supply chain. I dumpster dived the bins of restaurants and found loads of free food. I also explored the bins at Little India and found so many edible vegetables that I could not carry it home.

I brought friends there, but whether I brought 5 friends or 20 friends, we always ended up carrying all that we could carry, and have to discard about half of what we collected because we couldn’t carry anymore. Clearly, there was a lot of food waste taking place.

One night, we got to know an ex-vegetable shopkeeper. He told us that we should approach the shopkeepers and ask them for their unsold produce even before it got to the bins. However, the language barrier posed a problem. Our newfound friend helped us to overcome the barrier, and we started to get so much more vegetables.

I shared our finds on various Facebook groups and a soup kitchen got in touch with us, saying that they could use these vegetables to feed the food insecure. Did you know that there are about 387,000 people in Singapore who are food insecure? This means that they don’t have access to sufficient nutritious food. Yet we are simply throwing away good food!

I want to do something about that. Hence this project.

Funded by Singapore (January 2018)