NEW YORK, NY (November 12, 2020) — ReFED — the only national nonprofit focused exclusively on ending food loss and waste across the food system — has announced the launch of a $10 million fundraising campaign to support initiatives that will help it guide the food system in making a significant reduction in the amount of food being wasted each year. Reducing food waste will dramatically decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and conserve natural resources; it can also help increase access to healthy food in communities in need and strengthen the economy through new jobs, increased profits, and more investment opportunities.
Every year, approximately 40% of food grown and produced is never eaten, yet one in seven Americans remains food insecure. Food waste is also a top driver of climate change and resource depletion, causing 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions and consuming approximately 20% of freshwater, cropland, fertilizer, and landfill volume in the U.S. Project Drawdown’s 2020 Drawdown Review recognized food waste reduction as its number one solution to reduce greenhouse gases. The United Nations, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have all recognized the magnitude of this challenge and have made food waste reduction efforts a top priority by aligning around a goal of reducing food waste by 50% by the year 2030. Multiple solutions exist to reduce food waste, but more businesses, jurisdictions, and funders need to take action to reach the reduction goal.
In early 2021, ReFED will release its brand new Insights Engine, an online hub for data and insights about food waste, featuring a deep-dive analysis of more than 40 food waste reduction solutions and best practices; a detailed financial analysis to help direct the private and philanthropic capital needed to fund these efforts; a directory of solution providers; and a calculator showing the impact of food waste on GHG emissions, meals recovered, water usage, and more. To help coordinate efforts to implement the solutions in the Insights Engine, ReFED will also release its new Roadmap to 2030: Reducing U.S. Food Waste, which outlines seven key action areas across the food system and recommended priorities for each.
The ReFED Insights Engine and Roadmap to 2030 will guide ReFED’s work for the next ten years, as it leads the food system in taking measurable, scalable action to reduce food waste by 1) leveraging data and insights to highlight supply chain inefficiencies and economic opportunities; 2) catalyzing capital and fostering innovation; and 3) increasing the knowledge base within the field and setting the course for coordinated efforts.
“With its central role in the U.S. food system, ReFED is uniquely positioned to support the work of businesses, non-profits, government entities, and others that are implementing solutions to reduce food waste,” said Dana Gunders, Executive Director of ReFED. “We’re grateful for the funders who are taking meaningful action to address this problem and have recognized how supporting food waste reduction as an impact area aligns with their other funding priorities, including climate change mitigation and hunger relief.”
Thanks to the generosity of funders including Crown Family Philanthropies, The Fink Family Foundation, The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation, the Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh, and Wiancko Charitable Foundation, ReFED has already raised $3 million of its $10 million goal. In addition, The Robert W. Wilson Charitable Trust has made a matching grant to encourage funding from donors new to ReFED.
“We recognize that the needs of our communities and nonprofit partners have shifted dramatically this year,” said Sunny Reelhorn-Parr, Executive Director of The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation. “We remain focused on eliminating the additional strain that COVID-19 has created for families struggling with unemployment and food insecurity, and we know that knowledge and collaboration are imperative tools on this urgent mission. That’s why we’re incredibly proud to be the anchor funder of ReFED’s new Insights Engine — a tool we believe will empower all sectors of the food system to take meaningful action to end the disparity between hunger and waste in America.”
“Food waste is a problem with tangible solutions, and ReFED is leading the field in identifying and implementing promising strategies to drive real progress. The Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh recognizes the upcoming several years as a critical window to achieve our common goal of reducing food waste by 50% by 2030,” said Ida Posner of the Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh.
Jesse Fink, Trustee of the Fink Family Foundation and the Founder of ReFED, said, “Environmental stewardship cannot be separated from justice efforts if we are to attain real progress towards our sustainability goals. We need everyone at the table and a depth of perspective to help shape actionable solutions to building healthier communities, and reducing food waste is a large part of this. The Fink Family Foundation is proud to support ReFED’s work over the coming years to ensure matters of diversity, equity, and inclusion are addressed throughout the food system.”
Since 2016, ReFED’s work has been at the center of the food waste conversation with the launch of its original Roadmap to Reduce U.S. Food Waste, the first-ever national economic study and action plan to tackle food waste at scale. For more information on how to connect with ReFED to discuss funding opportunities, email [email protected]
ReFED is a national nonprofit working to end food loss and waste across the food system by advancing data-driven solutions to the problem. ReFED leverages data and insights to highlight supply chain inefficiencies and economic opportunities; mobilizes and connects people to take targeted action; and catalyzes capital to spur innovation and scale high-impact initiatives. ReFED’s goal is a sustainable, resilient, and inclusive food system that optimizes environmental resources, minimizes climate impacts, and makes the best use of the food we grow. For more information, visit www.refed.com.
ABOUT THE KROGER CO. ZERO HUNGER | ZERO WASTE FOUNDATION
The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation (the “Foundation”) is a 501(c)(3) public charity founded in 2018. The Foundation was formed to support initiatives that create communities free of hunger and waste.