You know that a third of the food produced ends up in landfills. Growers, restaurants and stores have surplus food that gets thrown away. It is appalling that so many people are starving while so much food is being wasted. This unnecessary waste can easily stop. Food Forward, a non-profit organization based in Los Angeles, has decided to save food that was destined to be thrown away. Instead of large amounts of fresh food ending up in landfills, it now goes to people in need.

Hungry people get access to fresh food

Since 2009, Food Forward has rerouted 250 million pounds of food from landfills and delivered over a billion servings of fresh produce to food insecure communities. The group works with 350 direct partners coordinating food donations, which have so far made it out to 12 California counties, six other states, and two Tribal nations.

Credit: Food Forward

“We understood workflows well enough, we understood efficiencies, we understood the network and how food flows through the L.A. area, the contiguous county, and the region,” CEO Rick Nahmias told Civileats.

Credit: Food Forward

“We’re all kind of under this umbrella, feeling like the last 10 years for Food Forward were a dress rehearsal for the pandemic.”

Credit: Food Forward

It is not easy to organize the transportation of products in such large quantities, because many fresh foods have a short shelf life and need to be moved to people in need in the shortest possible time. Nahmias credits his team’s nimbleness and excellent reactivity to the success that saw them win 2018 CA non-profit of the year. The organization appreciates all donations. Every dollar raised will move 10 pounds of food from restaurants, stores or farms. As a result, people in various communities have access to not only non-perishable food, but also fresh food such as tomatoes, cauliflower, cabbage and others.

Credit: Food Forward

Help for people and the environment

This is not only a help for people, but also for the environment. Food in landfills leads to large emissions of methane into the atmosphere. When food reaches people, the methane footprint is significantly reduced. The organization Food Forward could become an inspiration for other countries where nothing like this works. There is plenty of food for everyone, but it is important that organizations like Food Forward are created to get excess food to people in need.


Credit: Food Forward /