Spoiler Alert Blog | Food Waste


5 Celebrities Taking on Food Waste

Emily Malina
Emily Malina

7 celebrities taking on food waste banner with cartons of blueberries in background

An estimated 40% of food produced in the U.S. goes uneaten, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. Food is the single largest contributor to our landfills, yet roughly 1 in 6 Americans are food insecure. These sobering figures were the catalyst for launching Spoiler Alert, and have captured increasing attention from consumers and businesses alike.

Even the most famous among us have taken notice. Household name celebrities from across Hollywood, politics, and even the Vatican are speaking out and taking action to tackle this enormous issue. Check out these five celebrities advocating against wasting food.

1. Gisele Bundchen, Supermodel

Source: UNEP

Not only a supermodel, Gisele is a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). This Brazilian beauty is known for her strong commitment to the environment. She has spoken publicly about food waste, maintains a "green" blog as well as serves as a board member of the Rainforest Alliance. Watch this video to learn about how you can join "Team Gisele" and reduce food waste.

2. Dan Barber, Celebrity Chef

A James Beard award winning chef, Dan Barber has been recognized as one of the best chefs in the United States. Barber is well-known for his eco-conscious cooking, and earlier this year turned his posh NYC restaurant, Blue Hill, into a pop-up restaurant called WastED that derives its entire menu from what would otherwise be wasted food. Barber invited other celebrity chefs, including Grant Achatz, Danny Bowien, Mario Batali, Dominique Crenn and Alain Ducasse to join in the fun and bring attention to food waste and re-use. The menu from WastED included everything from “Dumpster Dive Vegetable Salad” to “Cured Cuts of Waste-Fed Pigs! 

3. Michael Bloomberg, Former NYC Mayor

Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is well known for his philanthropy work, but he has also made huge strides to fight food waste. In his 2013 State of the City address, Bloomberg called food waste “New York City’s final recycling frontier.” As Mayor, he enacted strict standards for the city’s food waste, including a goal in 2013 to doubling the amount of waste the city recycles or composts, and the city’s first Commercial Organics Law,

4. John Oliver, Comedian and Television Host


John Oliver is well known for his incredibly entertaining, and mildly scathing commentary on his show, Last Week Tonight. On July 19th, 2015, Oliver devoted his entire show to food waste in America. Oliver offered a sobering look at the food industry, saying “we all have to address our relationship with food waste”. He outlined many of the contributing factors, such as unhelpful expiration dates and inconsistent tax breaks for charitable donations from businesses. Our Spoiler Alert team was pleased to see our friend and fearless anti-food waste advocate, Emily Broad Lieb from the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic, featured on the segment.

5. Pope Francis

Pope Francis is the 266th and current Pope of the Catholic Church and has in recent years become quite vocal on the topic of food waste. On United Nations World Environment Day, the Pope shared with his audience in St. Peters Square that “throwing away food is like stealing from the table of the poor and the hungry.” He has criticized the widespread “culture of waste”, which “has made us insensitive even to the waste and disposal of food, which is even more despicable when all over the world, unfortunately, many individuals and families are suffering from hunger and malnutrition.”

Cheers to these public figures for joining the fight against wasting food. What other celebrities should be on this list? We’d love to hear from you in the comments! 

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