Everyone loses when food gets thrown away. PareUp is developing a mobile marketplace for surplus or unsold food. Retailers post their quality excess for a discount. Users enjoy delicious goods and keep them from the trash.
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Supermarkets alone are throwing away $15 billion of produce a year, largely because of overstocked displays and aesthetic imperfections. Restaurants and households are responsible for almost 86 billion pounds of food waste. And in many of these cases, this food can still be eaten or used.
While many places do their best to curb waste, the overall impact of their efforts is minimal without business regulations or city policy mandates. In the absence of these, New Yorkers spend $85 million a year sending food to the trash. We think there's a better way.
Retailers often toss food to protect their brands. Imperfectly shaped produce usually never makes it to the grocery floor. Items approaching their sell-by dates are often pulled off the shelves a couple days in advance. All this food is still fit to eat--in many cases, it's still delicious.
On the other side of the equation, the quantities and types of excess that food banks can accept are often limited by their operational budgets and their food safety and transportation guidelines.
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