Boulder Food Rescue
Boulder Food Rescue is a non-profit organization located in Boulder, CO. We rescue and redistribute perishable food "waste" to charities that serve homeless and at-risk individuals. Our goal is to help solve the problems of hunger, malnutrition, and food waste in our community.
In particular, we are focused on direct rescue and redistribution of fresh and healthy food that would be discarded otherwise. The flexibility of our model, and the direct "just in time" delivery mechanism, allows us to focus on small gaps left behind by larger food rescue organizations and food banks. We work hard to accomplish our task with minimal environmental impact and right now more than 90% of our food transportation is accomplished via human-powered means (bicycles and trailers), which is no small feat considering that we have rescued nearly 400,000 pounds of food in two years.
We work with area businesses to identify food that would otherwise be thrown away, which can be diverted from the dumpster (or compost bin). Often this is fresh produce, which may be damaged or blemished, prepared food such as steamer trays of catered leftovers, or day-old baked goods. This sort of very-soon-to-expire produce cannot be rescued by larger food banks that use warehouses. We also act as an on-call food rescue organization and pick up unexpected overstocks and overages.
Once a day, one of our volunteers rolls up with their bike, loads the food into a bike trailer and hauls it directly to an organization that is scheduled to receive it. We call this "direct just-in-time" food rescue, because it doesn't require any storage or sorting and the food can be used immediately. In order to prove that such a system can also be sustainable, we do nearly all of the food rescue by bike.