FOOD is free founder Lou Ridsdale wants to introduce you to food waste crusader Ronni Kahn as she tackles the issues on a global scale. Lou says the little things we all can do will together make a big imprint on addressing food insecurity across the region if we all adopt a little on Kahn’s food fighter spirit.
FOOD is Free founder Lou Ridsdale hopes to inspire others with legendary food crusader Ronni Kahn’s passion to tackle a global issue at the grassroots.
Ms Ridsdale watched the Oz Harvest founder in action earlier this year in a film festival and was determined to bring the documentary Food Fighter to Ballarat in a bid to fuel community-driven work and interest in improving food security.
“What Ronni is doing is dramatically different to here, particularly with her food recovery from supermarkets and delivering meals to people, but we are certainly addressing food security in Ballarat in our way,” Ms Ridsdale said.
“I have the advantage of a bird’s eye view in the laneway where there is such an interesting mix of people who come along. It’s really eye-opening...Food insecurity affects so many people in Ballarat in everyday life for so many reasons and many people do not understand."
A Ballarat Community Health report released in April conservatively estimated 12 per cent of Ballarat people are experiencing food insecurity. Food is Free Laneway helps to use preventable waste for good to increase access to fresh food.
Food is Free Laneway averages emptying two wheelie bins full of food scraps each fortnight from donations to avoid landfill. The group turns this into soil to grow food for the community.
Ms Ridsdale said Australians waste about 20 per cent of food they purchase and food waste in landfill emit methane 25 times more potent than car exhaust. But it was mostly avoidable.
The laneway accepts excess fresh produce that would normally end up in landfill, like extra lemons off the tree, for other to enjoy.
Ms Ridsdale said there were lots of little steps everyone could make to help reduce their food waste and to help feed others. These little changes together, she said, could make a big impact in the community.
Food is Free is hosting a special Food Fighter screening at Regent Cinemas on Wednesday night. The film documents Kahn’s global crusade on food security and food waste. Limited tickets to Food Fighter are available only online. A portion of money raised helps Food is Free projects. More: Food is Free Laneway on Facebook.
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