Startup Food Not Waste secures funding to reduce food waste

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Elle Crevits and her partner with a van of foodA new $1,800 investment from the Ryther Fund will allow St. Paul’s GreenHouse alumna Elle Crevits and her partner Jonathan Ramzan, an Environment and Business alumnus, to expand their social-purpose startup, Food Not Waste. The startup will divert unused food from restaurants and other food establishments to people in need in the community. St. Paul’s GreenHouse is a live-in social innovation and entrepreneurship program for local university students. The Ryther Fund is one of 59 donor advised funds administered by The Kitchener and Waterloo Community Foundation (KWCF).

Crevits had recently received $1,900 from GreenHouse’s Social Innovation Fund to begin the pilot project, and will now be able to double her food collection for redistribution with this new investment. She has also been able to bring new community partners into the project, including Taco Farm, Borealis Grille and Bar, Golf’s Steak House and Seafood, Bingemans, and Sole Restaurant and Wine Bar.

From mid-July to mid-August, Food Not Waste will rent a van to run the food redistribution program, picking up surplus food from these businesses as well as from vendors at the Kitchener market and delivering it to the House of Friendship. In addition to providing nutritious food to people, the pilot project will also attempt to get a better understanding of how much food can actually be rescued, and whether it is a match for the needs of the organizations they supply. If the pilot program proves viable, Crevits plans to operate Food Not Waste after her graduation from the University of Waterloo.

“The KWCF is always looking for opportunities to connect innovative and impactful projects with our fund holders,” said Rosemary Smith, CEO of The KWCF. “Projects like Food Not Waste are a prime example of the Ryther Fund stepping up to support a local program in an effort to improve the lives of the individuals in our community.”

Food, ready to be delivered

About St. Paul’s GreenHouse

St. Paul’s Greenhouse is a live-in innovation community specifically designed for students pursuing social entrepreneurship. Students receive mentorship to develop skills, networks, and experience to facilitate successful social-purpose startups and social-change initiatives.

About The Kitchener and Waterloo Community Foundation

The Kitchener and Waterloo Community Foundation improves the quality of life in Kitchener-Waterloo and the surrounding area, now and for generations to come, by building community endowment, addressing needs through grant making, and providing leadership on key community issues.

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