Tags: jean francois archambault | homeless | food

Jean-Francois Archambault's Homeless Food Initiative Uses Surplus to Feed the Hungry

banquet table with chafing dish heaters and canapes
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By    |   Friday, 19 October 2018 10:34 AM

Jean-Francois Archambault has figured out a simple way to feed the homeless — with unused food from the hotel and restaurant industry, The Toronto Star reported Thursday.

Fifteen years ago, the food recovery pioneer first began to consider ways to redistribute food waste back into the community of Montreal and has since developed a streamlined process that has expanded to Calgary, Ottawa, and Toronto, as well as Mexico City and Paris.

Through his non-profit organization La Tablée des Chefs, Archambault is making it easy for chefs to send food that would normally go to waste to those in need.

“I’ve had this idea about food recovery since 1996 when I was a student at the Quebec Institute for Hotel Management,” he told Ashoka in an interview recently. “In 2000, when I was working at the Fairmont Hotel in sales, my mother died at the age of 49. It was my mother’s death that made me think I couldn’t afford to waste time."

A study published earlier this year found that the average person in the U.S. wastes about a pound of food per day.

Archambault told Akosha that, when he was working in the hospitality industry, he was “disturbed by the immense waste of good food left over from conferences and weddings.”

He added that, at the same time, food banks were suffering periodic shortages, so he devised a way to link the two together.

La Tablée takes surplus food donated by hotels, restaurants, and other institutions and donates it to charitable organizations that have put forth a request for food to supplement their programs, The Star said.

Today, Archambault’s organization has diverted more than 750 million tons of uneaten food from landfills and fed more than 2 million people.

Archambault’s efforts reflect a growing need to connect food surplus with feeding the hungry.

Recently, Austin, Texas, introduced an ordinance banning restaurants from throwing out any food and instead requiring them to either donate leftovers to those in need or compost the garbage.

The initiative forms part of Austin’s Universal Recycling Ordinance, which was created to help the city achieve its Zero Waste 2040 goal.

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Jean-Francois Archambault has figured out a simple way to feed the homeless — with unused food from the hotel and restaurant industry.
jean francois archambault, homeless, food
Friday, 19 October 2018 10:34 AM
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