You know that day before you go on an extended vacation and stand in front of a half-full fridge due to poor planning, heave a heavy sigh and take out the garbage bag? Well, if you were living in Cologne, Koblenz or Berlin, instead you would log onto foodsharing.de, would create a food basket with all the goods you want to give away and decide on a convenient pick-up time. Then, you wait for the internet to work its magic and chances are you won’t have to throw your food away and somebody else will have to make one less grocery trip.
The initiative was born in January 2013 and has become an instant hit (so much that its servers crashed during the initial phase); in the last couple of weeks, already 350 food baskets with over 1 ton of food were thus exchanged.
In addition to individuals and small food producers (e.g. farms or bakeries) that have food they cannot consume in time, dumpster-divers also contribute to a share of the offers.
Plus, ‘hot spots’ are set up for people who don’t have access to the internet, like a fridge in a covered market in Berlin’s Kreuzberg, where anybody can help themselves to food.
The initiators also suggest that people who have only half the ingredients of a dish they want to make connect with others on the site living in their neighborhood, creating community out of necessity.
Thus, as the initiative’s website postulates, the ethical dimension of food is reestablished. People share food – without money and without reservations – and thereby keep in mind that food is much more than a commodity.