Listen: How About a Hearty Helping of Ugly Vegetables?
"So take your seat with the rest of the class and let's get right. Today's topic and be warned. Things are going to get very ugly very quickly. We're talking of course about Miss Shape Bruce vegetables not my driver's license photo going to start out by telling you what you probably already know ugly vegetables or fruit. Our justice this healthy for you is the better looking stuff in the grocery stores. And there's some research that suggests that ugly vegetables are more nutritious than their more beautiful siblings by away when I talk about ugly vegetables. I'm also including fruit and other items that may appear unattractive. Ugly food is become a thing in our culture and companies have been it started the deliver ugly food to your doorstep among them or misfits market hungry harvest and imperfect produce. They send regular shipments of ugly vegetables to your door at prices at are often much lower than your local supermarket. All this sounds like a great idea especially since we waste about forty percent the food produced in the US mostly for money food or restaurants or food that goes bad in our refrigerator but like so many other things. Reality doesn't always meet the hype and it's My job to crush your hopes injury Earlier this year the Journal of Marketing said and I'm quoting buying unattractive produce negatively impacts consumers view of themselves else causing a drop in self perceptions in other words by by pretty fruit. I'll be pretty to. It's also like the idea that guys who drive loud out flashy cars or compensated for having small hands. The Marketing Journal says to Change People's minds so they believe they're doing something great great for the planet or for some other reason. Though not only by ugly vegetables they will seek them out. It helps to know that very few of those ugly vegetables forever going into a landfill. The leftovers reader fed to animals or plowed into the ground. Become Fertilizer for next year's crop. A high percentage goes to restaurants whether sliced sliced and diced and the diner has no idea it started out as an ugly vegetable goes pre shredded. Carrots pre cut onions peppers and squash in the supermarket. Same same deal. It's a way to use ugly produce and not waste environmental journalists. Emily add can wrote in the new republic and I'm quoting again. The solution of food waste than is not normalize and monetize ugly produce. It's to create a system where excess food is produced in the first place. How can venture venture capital backed companies contribute to that goal when they profit from industrial agriculture's overproduction so the beautiful fruits and vegetables go to grocery stores and the ugly stuff ends up somewhere? Someone or something is going to eat it in one form or another. Maybe we shouldn't feel bad about selecting the best looking food after after all we're part of the system that's intended to bring us good food. Ugly Vegetable Movement is hot right now. But it's hurting others. In the business of feeding people foodbanks for example many of them depend upon donations of food. That isn't pretty enough to the cell or is near the end of its life. The company's capturing and selling the ugly vegetables have significantly reduced the food that the food banks receive because farmers I can now make profits from it then there are the kitchens that feed the poor and hungry using donated foods. Those kitchens also trained people so they can get jobs in the culinary industries fewer donations. They get fewer people they can help is buying that food. Okay sin someone has to eat it or it will go to waste too as you suspected it's not that simple. A lot of work goes into making pretty fruit. Look even more beautiful for example. Lots of fruit vegetables are coated in wax to make them last longer. And look better. British author. Suzanne Lockhart has spent a lot of time in the food. Business including ten years. Ears is vice president of a multinational food science organization back in two thousand five when it was February and very cold. She noticed how fresh fresh ripe apples looked at the Canadian store she usually past. She thought the fruit must have come from somewhere else in the world. But how did they get the candidate looking so good well. It's helped along by a chemical called smart. Fresh Canadian government allows vendors to spray it on the fruit up to four times that means the apple Suzanne was was looking at could have been picked a year earlier."