"Come unto me all ye ends of the earth, buy milk and honey, without money and without price."- 2 Nephi 26:25
Think this is a fantasy? Think again. Yes, Christ is speaking and yes, he is talking more about salvation than eating in this life, but these resources for free food are legit. Today I'll be discussing how to supplement and replace part of your family's diet for free. These resources are community based, not government based and come from the goodness of volunteers, so feel free to add to the resources when you can contribute or add a legitimate resource in the comments below and I'll be sure to add it to the list!
- Falling Fruit- A user-edited resource map/database where anyone can add locations where food can be foraged, including dumpsters, but focused more on live plants and trees. I found out that there are hundreds of locations in my city! Including nut trees, fruit trees, blueberry bushes, etc.
- Dumpster Diving- Introduction to how to pick up free food from dumpsters, without even needing to climb inside
- Food Not Bombs- A group of anarchists that collect food from grocery stores and give it out as either groceries or prepared into meals. They're awesome community builders and very friendly. Find a group in your area!
- Food Not Lawns- Neighbors sharing excess produce by replacing their lawns with gardens and hosting events to swap seeds, etc.
- Buy Nothing Project- Local gift economies share things by giving or just borrowing amongst neighbors. You join a Facebook group with your neighbors and can give, request, receive, and build community. Sometimes food is offered, but usually it's more durable goods and sometimes plants. So far, I've received shredded paper (by request for compostable cat litter), a scanner/printer, a crockpot, and a Pyrex baking pan (replacing one of my peeling and rusting ones, yuck to yay!)
- Community Garden Free Boxes- Our neighborhood community garden has a box hung on the fence for placing free produce for anyone to grab. Look for a community garden near you and see if they are willing to do the same!
- (Salt Lake Valley only, but maybe start a movement?) Green Urban Lunchbox- This is a local non-profit that allows volunteers to help seniors grow a garden for only the cost of water. Volunteers care for the garden and the harvest is split between volunteers, senior hosts, and local senior centers. They also have a fruit share program where volunteers harvest fruit trees and the homeowner receives a tax-deduction. The fruit is split between the homeowner, volunteers, and hunger relief. This organization offers classes and farm training as well. I would love to see the Back Farms and FruitShare programs be started in other cities as well. Think of the clean yards, free fresh produce, tax deductions, and beauty spread throughout the world!
- Local Farmers, find at Farmer's Markets and see if they have any "seconds", or wasted food that isn't pretty enough to sell at the market. This could apply to dairy, meat, etc. as well.
- Grocery store- food that is expiring soon or "seconds", usually found in the "bargain" /"discount" section of each department. Ask employees where the brown bananas or discount section is for produce, etc. or if there is any in the back.
Now we can see how food can be bought without money or price or just for cheap. Here's to better food without price!