An estimated 10 million tons of specialty crops never gets harvested or makes it beyond the farm (about one-third of what is grown). This loss happens primarily beyond the grower's control due to insufficient viable markets, cosmetic imperfections, weather events and more. (No Food Left Behind, WWF) At Growers for Grace, we see this as 10 million tons of plant-based promise in circular, sustainable design.
In the field of cancer treatment, 64.9% of all small molecule drugs are influenced by natural product structures. (Newman et al., 2020)
In a review covering more than 150 references and studies performed between 2001 and 2016 on the recovery, characterization, and application of valuable constituents of available plant-based secondary stream resources, Schieber noted, "considering the numerous conventional and novel technologies that have been employed for the processing of by-products and the extraction and fractionation of fractions or compounds, it seems that from a technological point of view a sound basis has been established to obtain valuable components in appreciable quantities."
Poor diet has been linked scientifically to nearly half of our nation's deaths from heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. (Tufts) At the same time, the CDC reports that only one in ten of us is actually consuming the recommended daily servings of fruits & vegetables.
Diet-related chronic disease has been called out as a leading driver of our burgeoning healthcare costs. (Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University) While food has been the culprit, research by the Aspen Institute has found that it can also be the cure. If food is medicine, we're growing the answers in vast volumes of hope.
Food waste has enormous impacts on our environment, food insecurity, the economy, and more, but a range of solutions already exist to reduce it. Some are breakthrough innovations, some are basic best practices, and many have a strong potential for investment returns. Growers for Grace is working hard on critical problem solving in this area, but we need your support.
ReFED's food waste analysis estimates that an annual investment of $14 billion over the next ten years can reduce food waste by 45 million tons each year. That investment would result in $73 billion in annual net financial benefit – a five-to-one return. Plus, every year, it would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 75 million metric tons, save 4 trillion gallons of water, and recover the equivalent of 4 billion meals for those in need. Over ten years, it would create 51,000 jobs – and achieve our 2030 reduction goal.
O merciful Creator, your loving hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature: Make us always thankful for your loving providence, and give us grace to honor you with all that you have entrusted to us; that we, remembering the account we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of your good gifts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Prayers from The Book of Common Prayer, Anglican Liturgy Press, 2019)
O heavenly Father, you have filled the world with beauty: Open our eyes to behold your gracious hand in all your works; that, rejoicing in your whole creation, we may learn to serve you with gladness; for the sake of him through whom all things were made, your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
WASTED! THE STORY OF FOOD WASTE was produced to help bring awareness to the way we purchase, cook, recycle, and eat food. Through the eyes of chefs like Anthony Bourdain, Dan Barber, Mario Batali, Massimo Bottura, and Danny Bowien, we begin to see how some of the world’s most influential chefs make the most of every kind of food every day, transforming what many may initially consider scraps, into incredible dishes that can help create a more secure food system and even a healthier planet.
“You drench the plowed ground with rain, melting the clods and leveling the ridges. You soften the earth with showers and bless its abundant crops.
You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” | Psalm 65:10-11
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