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Dumpster diver sparks conversation after sharing astounding food haul from big box store: 'This is awesome and so sad'

"We totaled up the potential cost and it was $500 of groceries."

"We totaled up the potential cost and it was $500 of groceries."

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Dumpster diving has become more popular in recent years. In part, that's because of just how much perfectly good food and other inventory stores throw away. One dumpster diver on Reddit did the math and said they found hundreds of dollars worth of groceries in one trip.

What happened?

The excited user shared several photos of their prizes. "Yesterday's haul!" they proclaimed. "My friend and I did a big diving day. … Groceries came from Amazon Fresh and Walmart. We totaled up the potential cost and it was $500 of groceries!"

"We totaled up the potential cost and it was $500 of groceries."
Photo Credit: Reddit
"We totaled up the potential cost and it was $500 of groceries."
Photo Credit: Reddit

Their photos show at least 10 boxes of name-brand cereal, organic milk, perfectly ripe bananas, whole cartons of eggs, and dozens of tubs of yogurt — plus a few non-food items like shampoo, digital thermometers, and a hot chocolate maker. 

"This is awesome and so sad," said one commenter.

Why is this dumpster diving haul important?

When stores throw out products, they can no longer profit from them. To make up for those losses, they raise the price of items they can still sell, which means more expensive groceries for everyone.

With that in mind, it's no wonder many people are turning to dumpster diving.

Meanwhile, wasting food means wasting the water, land, materials, and fuel that went into making and shipping those products. More need to be manufactured to feed everyone, which means more disruptions to the environment as we harvest resources. Wasting food isn't good for the Earth — and diverting products from the garbage is.

Are Walmart and Amazon Fresh doing anything about this?

This isn't the first time Walmart's name has come up in connection with wasting food. Unfortunately, many stores are too concerned about possible liability to donate or even discount food that's too close to its expiration date, even if it's still good to eat.

Amazon Fresh had its own eco-friendly solution, according to the original poster. "They have separate compost bins with only food items inside," they said in a comment. Composting — turning organic trash into fertilizer — is one of the best strategies for recycling food waste.

What can I do to minimize food waste?

Growing your own food instead of relying on wasteful companies to provide it means you have total control over what happens to your scraps; you can compost them and reuse them in your garden. Plus, you'll avoid supporting wasteful companies.

There are also many steps you can take to reduce spoilage and waste in your kitchen, including storing food correctly, shopping with a meal plan in mind, and fixing up leftovers for another meal.

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