October 24, 2021

Marketing Course Puts Food Waste on the Menu

From left to right: Rebecca Alley, Preston Everett, Cameron Jackson and Dustin Jenkins catalog expired dairy products at the Fredericksburg Food Co-op, as part of UMW’s new “Alleviating Food Waste” course. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

From left to right: Rebecca Alley, Preston Everett, Cameron Jackson and Dustin Jenkins catalog expired dairy products at the Fredericksburg Food Co-op, as part of UMW’s new “Alleviating Food Waste” course. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

Becca Winicour stands on her tiptoes to snag a soy yogurt off the top shelf, as Maggie Ellis, grocery scanner in hand, consults another classmate.

“I found three blueberry ones,” she said, “but they’re not even a month old.”

These University of Mary Washington seniors are enrolled in a new course called Alleviating Food Waste, which explores the root causes of unused food – a multi-billion-dollar problem in the United States – as well as ways in which it can be remedied. Hungry to learn more, students spend a few hours each week documenting expired products at the Fredericksburg Food Co-op, create tasty dishes with soon-to-be discarded items and cook up campaigns for saving imperfect produce.

“Around 40 percent of all food in our country goes to waste,” said Associate Professor of Marketing Kashef Majid, who teaches the class. Read more.

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