Dana Frasz was first introduced to widespread endemic poverty while volunteering in Southeast Asia more than a decade ago. The malnourishment she encountered, especially among children, left a deeper impression on her than the beautiful landscape.

Returning home to Maine, and while attending college at both the Rochester Institute of Technology and Sarah Lawrence College, Frasz found herself acutely aware of the tremendous variety and quantity of food everywhere she went – and yet, much of it was being thrown away.

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Hallie Bateman

“Witnessing tray after tray of perfectly good food being dumped down the garbage disposal in my college dining hall is what brought me to want to learn and act on the issue on a larger level,” she says.

There was no lack of work to be done. The average American household tosses a quarter of the food it brings home. Retailers throw out bruised or misshapen produce and day-old baked goods. Catering companies are left with trays of untouched gourmet cuisine.