Dumpster diving is the practice of sifting through commercial or residential trash to find items that have been discarded by their owners, but which may be useful to the dumpster diver. Dumpster diving is known as “skipping” in the UK; the term “dumpster” is American.The practice of dumpster diving is also known as bin-diving, containering, D-mart, dumpstering, tatting, or simply, recycling. A similar term is “binner” and is often used to describe people who collect recyclable materials for their deposit or resale value. Whatever we call it, these people are saving us from ourselves by keeping useful materials out of landfill.
I’ve read some personal blogs from people who dumpster dive, and they often have photos showing counters covered with organic food. Why all the waste, especially with stores selling food which is supposed to be more environmentally friendly?
The answer is etched in class privilege and a lack of consciousness about the true cost of food.
Maggie, a dumpster diver who lives in Ontario, talks about the psychology behind throwing out food:
“These places throw away food that they can’t sell because it’s not beautiful. Most people who shop at organic places are fairly affluent; they will pay for the best. So if it doesn’t look perfect it gets thrown out — even though I’ve paid for stuff in worse condition!”
What do you think can be done to educate people and compel them to change their behaviour? Do you think this is even possible?
Look at all the meat these guys found. I would love to know where these people are dumpster diving!
Some people only eat meat if they find it, while others won’t eat it at all; and some, like me, do purchase meat. What are your feelings on the buying and consumption of animals and animal bi-products like eggs and milk?
Making juice is one of the best ways I’ve found to use fruit that is too soft to eat or fruit you need to cut brown parts out of before consuming.
I put the fruit in a basin of warm water, scrub with unscented hand soap, and rinse. Then I cut the skin and any bad parts off, before putting it in the blender.
After the blender is full of fruit, I like to add some honey. This is the only non-dumpstered item, other than water, which is in the smoothie. Manuka honey is a natural antibiotic, and has a nice caramel taste.
You might notice some stuff in the background – I like to reuse tea bags (placed on a paper plate, which would otherwise go straight in the recycling bin, to both soak up any excess water and also keep the counter clean) I find I can use some dark teabags 3 times! You just need to give them a bit longer to seep in the boiling water before taking a sip.
Now the smoothie is almost ready to go. Just add water until it reaches the top… No milk? Not necessary! Bananas provide the smoothie smoothness.
This smoothie contains:
– 2 bananas
– 2 peaches
– 2 pears
– Squirt of honey
If you remove the honey, it’s completely vegan (and still super sweet tasting)