You'll never let a strawberry rot after watching this video

The Extraordinary Life and Times of Strawberry
Screen capture The Extraordinary Life and Times of Strawberry

Created by the Ad Council for its Save The Food campaign, this video follows an unappreciated strawberry on its tragic journey from field to trash can.

“Wasting food wastes everything – water, labor, fuel, money, love.”

Food waste is a tremendous problem in the United States, with an estimated 40 percent of all food ($162 billion worth) getting thrown out before it’s eaten. This gross unnecessary waste stems from many factors, many of which occur during the production and processing phases, as well as transportation, storage, and high aesthetic standards upheld by grocery stores.

Much of the waste, however, occurs from consumers’ failure to eat the food they buy. Perhaps they’ve purchased too much, overestimated their ability to finish off vegetables and fruits, or eaten out too many times in a given week. Or maybe the food is simply forgotten, overlooked, shrugged off as plentiful, cheap, and therefore disposable.

That’s what happens in a brief yet oddly touching video called “The Extraordinary Life and Times of Strawberry.” Created by the Ad Council for a campaign called Save The Food, this video follows a lovely red strawberry from its ripening on a vine in a field, to getting picked, sorted and packaged, shuffled through cold storage, flown to a faraway supermarket, and displayed on a shelf, where it’s picked up by an absent-minded mother whose daughter has begged for strawberries. Soon the strawberry is molding in the back of the fridge, neglected and unappreciated, until it gets tossed in the trash – a tragic end to a short-lived life.

Triple Pundit explains more about the Save The Food campaign:

“The campaign primarily targets moms, because they typically ‘make more of the decisions around food — planning, shopping, cooking and disposing,’ explained Gary Koepke, North American chief creative officer at SapientNitro [the agency that produced the video]. ‘Millennials are also a key audience,’ because they are ‘engaged and idealistic about helping the environment’ and show an interest in ‘life hacks that help them experience more and waste less’.”

While the message isn’t new, particularly to TreeHugger readers, it’s an important one that deserves to be reiterated. Minimizing food waste is such an easy way to make a difference, but it does require changes in habit. Save The Food gives people the tools to do so, with practical tips on how to plan meals, shop smartly, decipher expiry dates, and store food properly.

Tags: Farming | Fruits & Vegetables | Shopping | Waste | Waste Not Want Not

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