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Tacking the food waste crisis: 10 canadian businesses on a mission to save our planet

Earlier this year, a striking report found that 35.5 million metric tonnes of food are lost or wasted annually in Canada, costing the economy $49.5 billion. While the nation’s government sets out to tackle the food waste crisis with their newest sustainability initiatives, local organizations are making their unique impact.

Whether it’s through more innovative farming, eco-friendly sourcing or more intelligent waste management, businesses all over the country are taking a stand against this issue. In this blog post, we’ll explore 10 Canadian companies on a mission to save our planet.

10 Canadian Businesses Tackling the Food Waste Crisis

1. Mother Raw

The food industry currently causes two significant problems that harm the planet: wasteful practices and carbon-heavy production. Mother Raw is tackling both of these issues with their all-vegan, plant-based line of edible products.

Stocking a range of dips, quesos and condiments, Mother Raw delivers all of their goods in spoil-free, recyclable packaging to avoid unnecessary waste. Even the energy they use to make their products is powered by plants, reducing their carbon emissions as a business.

2. Flirt Kombucha

If you love sipping on healthy drinks and want to save the planet in the process, Flirt Kombucha is the perfect Canadian business to get on board with. Brewed from unsold fruits, their 100% natural kombucha is created by hand in Outaouais.

Since wasted fruit accounts for at least 15% of Canada’s overall food waste, initiatives like this couldn’t be more critical to tackle the issue. In a bid to reduce the waste problem we’re currently facing, Flirt are ‘democratizing’ the use of unsold food and constantly create new recipes to use up their produce.

3. TruLeaf

While sustainable customer-facing businesses are on the rise across Canada, there are also some B2B initiatives worth celebrating.

Using the latest innovative technology, TruLeaf designs efficient vertical farms to minimize the gap from farm to fork. Their multi-level farms can be built anywhere and deliver a year’s worth of sustainable produce while keeping waste statistics low. Instead of relying on foreign imports, food can be grown locally to increase food security and cut out hefty emissions caused by transport. Since food waste is currently generating more problems than well-known issues like plastic production, initiatives like TruLeaf are essential to note.

4. The Very Good Butchers

Eating a plant-based diet is one of the best ways to cut down on food waste and reduce meat consumption – two major contributing factors to the issue of global warming. The Very Good Butchers are a growing Canadian business making plant-based eating easy.

Instead of producing artificial meat alternatives, this budding brand provides delicious bean-based goods to their large customer base. These innovative vegan products have a much longer shelf life than your average burger, minimizing the chance of waste and encouraging smarter meal planning.

5. Snak

Everyone loves grazing in the afternoon, right? Take that universally acknowledged fact, combine it with sustainable ideas and you get Snak.

This Canadian brand is revolutionizing the snacking industry one peanut butter cup at a time with healthy, organic and locally sourced ingredients. While reducing food waste with their pre-portioned bites, Snak is also tackling the transport issue too.

Food in landfills causes huge emissions, but so do the trucks required to ship our goods. Snak sources all of its ingredients from local Canadian businesses, reducing the need for carbon-heavy importations.

6. Feedback

The next Canadian business tackling the food waste crisis is Feedback, an app designed to divert excess food by offering delicious discounts.

Their core vision is to put food into people’s hands and onto their plates, not into bins and landfills. Customers can order meals through the app and enjoy end-of-day promotions on goods nearing the end of their lifecycle. Feedback has rescued 40,000 meals, donated 24,000 and found a way of uniting business owners and customers with an eco-friendly solution.

7. FoodCycler

If you’re looking for a way to target your household food waste, FoodCycler is the perfect Canadian business to get on board with. After recognizing that composting can be time-consuming, inconvenient and unpleasant, FoodCycler created a family-friendly alternative.

Their food waste recycling devices can fit into every size kitchen and turn wasted scraps into a plant-feeding amendment – all without producing any gruesome odors. This reduces methane emissions and prevents more food from reaching our landfills which are already overflowing. It’s an excellent solution for both individuals and commercial enterprises alike!

8. Feed It Forward

Feed It Forward is Canada’s first and only pay-what-you-can bakery, coffee shop and grocery store. Founded in 2014, the initiative was launched by Chef Jagger Gordon, who was horrified by the immense amount of food waste produced in his industry.

The social enterprise has two key aims: minimize food waste and put an end to hunger. All of the goods sold by Feed It Forward would have usually been thrown in the trash, reducing their climate impact significantly. Customers can pay what they feel the products are worth, giving more vulnerable people the chance to eat well for less.

9. Not Far From the Tree

Did you know that almost half of the fruit and vegetables grown globally go to waste? It’s a staggering statistic, and one Not Far From the Tree has taken note of.

Toronto is home to a substantial urban orchard where 1.5 million pounds of fruit is grown every year. This charitable mission organizes volunteers to pick and share the fruit throughout their local community to prevent unnecessary waste. Not Far From the Tree brings people together to do good, raise awareness for food waste, and build a robust and sustainably-minded community.

10. Nada

When it comes to grocery shopping, the whole process can often feel pretty wasteful. Plastic packaging, pre-cut portions and impulse purchasing all contribute to the food waste crisis. Nada is making the entire experience more efficient and more eco-friendly.

This package-free grocery store is undoubtedly making waves in the sustainability space. While all of their products are sourced from local farmers and suppliers, they’re also laid out in a way that allows customers to take the exact amount they need – no more, no less.

With carbon neutral delivery, upcycled containers and a commitment to a circular supply chain, they’re offering a viable eco-alternative to the weekly food shop.

When it comes to tackling the food waste crisis, assessing your impact is essential. The way we spend our money speaks volumes about what we want the future of our planet to look like. Check out your local stores, take note of the sustainable options near you and start making a real difference. We all have the power to save the planet!


A Note on Terminology

The FoodCycler™ is a countertop electric food waste recycler that breaks down food scraps through a mechanical process into a dry, lightweight by-product that can be used in gardening applications as a fertilizer. The FoodCycler™ and other electric food waste recyclers are not composters, nor do they produce compost or soil as they do not require additional microbes to break down food waste with bacteria. However, the term "electric composter" has been used to describe the FoodCycler™.