Within their pilot program, Cultivate repackages leftover cafeteria food and turns it into weekend meals for low-income students at Elkhart Community Schools.

“Mostly, we rescue food that’s been made but never served by catering companies, large food service businesses, like the school system. You don’t always think of a school,” said said Jim Conklin of Cultivate.

Over-preparation of meals is common among large-scale catering operations, because it’s always better to have more than to run out. Cultivate’s model ensures the unused food is packaged with other food to comprise healthy, balanced meals.

“Over-preparing is just part of what happens,” said Conklin. “We take well-prepared food, combine it with other food and make individual frozen meals out if it.”

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