The United States wastes about 40 percent of the food we produce, with some 52 million tons of it ending up in landfills (Source: Rethink Food Waste Through Economics and Data). GRACE Communications Foundation, an organization that advocates for sustainability and promotes awareness of environmental issues, is teaming up with Feedback and a few other organizations to spread their message about how we can cut down on food waste to New York City by hosting a free feast for 5,000 people in Union Square tomorrow.

GRACE Communications Foundation, Feedback, food, food waste, food waste America, landfill, free feast, Union Square, New York City, Manhattan

The event, called Feeding the 5,000, will provide a meal using high quality ingredients that would have otherwise gone to waste to demonstrate the problem of food waste in America. Some of the organic matter would have been tossed because it wouldn’t meet cosmetic standards at grocery stores; some of it would be inadvertently thrown away by consumers who just didn’t realize they could have composted it or used it in a different way. According to Feedback, 10 percent of “rich countries’ greenhouse gas emissions come from growing food that is never eaten.”

Related: NYC to triple food waste compost program in 2017 to reach a million residents

Feeding the 5,000 will take place from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM in Union Square’s North Plaza. 5,000 other meals will also be prepared for food pantries and soup kitchens across the city.

You can get involved by signing up to volunteer here or joining the Facebook event page.

+ GRACE Communications Foundation

+ Feedback

Images via U.S. Department of Agriculture on Flickr and Wikimedia Commons