Visionary social entrepreneur Ben Simon will present “Waste Not, Want Not: How Food Recovery Can End Hunger in the 21st Century" at Drake University on Tuesday, October 13. This presentation is open to the public and will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Sussman Theater at the Drake University’s Olmsted Center (lower level).
Simon, a leader in food waste recovery and a Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneur, will share his experience founding the Food Recovery Network in 2011 while he was a student at University of Maryland, College Park. The Food Recovery Network works with college students nation-wide to take safe and edible surplus food from college dining halls and businesses that would otherwise be thrown away and then donate this food to hunger-relief organizations. To date, 872,519 pounds of food have been recovered and donated to those in need. Ben served as FRN's Executive Director for its first four years. Under Ben’s leadership, FRN became the largest student movement against hunger with chapters at over 150 colleges. Today, Ben is still involved in FRN's certification and consulting work.
Ben is currently based in Oakland, CA where he is a co-founder and CEO at Imperfect, America's leading consumer brand for ugly produce. Imperfect is on a mission to find a home for the 6 billion pounds per year of produce that is currently wasted because of its physical appearance. Imperfect offers low-cost options to purchase this healthy, fresh produce at a price that is 30% less than most grocery store produce.
This presentation comes at an opportune time, as Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced that food waste and food recovery are a priority of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), these topics have become prominent throughout the United States and the world. Drake students, faculty, and staff have already joined in on these efforts. Please join us for this opportunity to capitalize upon the work currently being done at Drake to reduce both food waste and food insecurity.
A reception will follow Ben’s presentation. This event is hosted by the Drake Next Course: Food Recovery Network Chapter, the Drake Environmental Action League, and the Drake Agricultural and Environmental Law Association. For more information on Food Recovery programs at Drake, please click here.