Pigs and other livestock are reaping rewards from Michele Obama’s hugely unpopular school lunch program because they’re being fed the enormous amount of food American children are throwing away.
The Galloping Grace Youth Ranch in Rio Rancho, N.M., decided to use the wasted food discarded by students from nearby elementary schools to feed pigs and other animals. The ranch collects about 5 tons of wasted food from local schools and stores per week according to EAG News.
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“It’s really whatever they don’t eat coming off their trays so when they get up to the trash cans they will scrape it into one of our buckets that we can pick up daily,” said the ranch’s CEO Max Wade.
“If you think about it, it’s a fresh salad bar every day. Fruits and vegetables and they love it,” he said.
Wade is referring to the pigs loving it, and that’s only because the majority of children don’t.
The Rio Rancho “lunch repurposing program” isn’t the only one its kind.
According to EAG News, American schools spend an estimated $3.5 million per day on food that ends up in the garbage can. Luckily for farmers, there is plenty of livestock around the country to eat it, including 3,000 fortunate pigs in Rhode Island that also get to dine on the government dime.
Not everyone, however, is feeding their livestock with the copious amount of food waste.
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The Nebraska Farmers Union took a different route and worked with Lincoln-area schools to collect the waste for an educational composting program.
“Composting gives them more hands-on experience. They see how their waste is going to be turned into a useful product rather than going into a landfill,” said Brittney Albin, interim recycling coordinator at Lincoln Public schools.
While no one can blame Wade and other farmers for utilizing this newly available resource for the betterment of their animals, American taxpayers might not like the idea that their money is going to feed pigs instead of children.
Saner heads might suggest the best way to stop waste is not to create it in the first place.
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