A Real Food Day

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School:  McKim Elementary

The final unit in Beyond Recycling focuses around food – “real food”, specifically. We define “real food” as following the “5 N’s”:

·        Nutritious: healthy

·        Near: local

·        Now: seasonal

·        Naked: not packaged in disposable wrappers

·        Natural: whole foods or not heavily processed

The grade 6’s were first introduced to this idea through a video comparing the origins of ingredients on a store bought pizza to a homemade pizza. This led nicely into a discussion about a class “real food” pot-luck.

But before they could enjoy the fruits of their labours, we took a field trip across town to explore the ecofootprint of food waste in Kimberley. First, we visited Save-On Foods, to see how this 2-year old grocery store minimizes waste.

We went behind the scenes to see the -40 degree Celsius cold storage, the dairy freezer, and the loading bay with it’s own “Wall-E” machine. Using different temperature freezers, the store is able to maximize food longevity and reduce the amount of waste foods. The ever-popular “Wall-E” machine is great a reducing the store’s transportation footprint by compacting cardboard before transporting it to the recycling depot.

Most significantly of all, this grocery store is part of Kimberley’s food recovery program and donates all of the unsellable but still edible foods to the Healthy Kimberley Food Recovery Depot.

So, after touring the grocery store, we headed up to the Depot. There, we saw how food is sorted for the Food Bank, compost, farm animals, and human re-distribution – all of which is diverted from ending up in the landfill. The students even got to help with small organization tasks around the Depot, taking note of what gets sent out to local organizations like the Early Learning Center, school lunch programs, and even the general public, saving huge amounts of food from ending up in the landfill.

Finally, after an eye-opening field trip, the class celebrated with a “real food” potluck. Students brought in homemade cookies, muffins, salads, and plenty of fresh fruit for the smoothie bar. What a fun way to wrap up Beyond Recycling!