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Norwegian NGO's legal 'Dumpster Deli' draws attention to food waste


By Ellen Ormesher, Senior Reporter

January 20, 2023 | 3 min read

A Norweigan NGO has worked with Publicis to get people shopping from a 'dumpster grocery store'.

Dumpster grocers

Every year, grocery stores in Norway throw away 250.000 dumpsters worth of edible food / Publicis Kitchen

In Norway, taking expired food from public bins and refuse collections is illegal and can land you up to three years in prison.

However, at a time when many are facing financial difficultty due to the cost of the living crisis, an NGO group called Future in Our Hands is inviting grocery stores across the country to leave edible but unwanted food that would end up in bins outside in newly appointed ‘Dumpster Deli Groceries'.

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The campaign was devised by Publicis Kitchen and will allow people to collect unwanted food that would otherwise go to waste, legally and safely.

“Every year, grocery stores in Norway throw away 250.000 dumpsters like these of edible food. We’ve been working to stop this for a long time. This stunt is a creative, visual, and fun way to highlight the enormous food waste that takes place in our country today, and perhaps we may reach new target groups and people who haven't been aware of the problem with this initiative”, says the communications manager for Future In Our Hands, Anne Kari Garberg.

Dumpster Deli
Dumpster Deli

The initiative will roll out to different grocery chain brands in the future. Garberg says she hopes as many people as possible will catch on to the stunt, backing their proposal to put in place an effective food waste law.

“It’s important that the law should prevent food waste, and states that waste that is unavoidable has to be donated to food centers and other players who can redistribute the food to those who need it, instead of ending up in the trash”.

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