I came to eggcup through my other volunteering activities, where I saw how many people have difficulty getting enough food for themselves and their families. The food banks deal with brief crises, such as a benefits sanction or the sudden loss of a job. But we need longer- term ways to work with and support the many people who are always just on the edge of getting by, with jobs that don’t pay enough or give variable hours, and with erratic and punitive benefits.
So I joined this project thinking about food poverty. But as I’ve worked with my colleagues, I have become more aware of just how much food is wasted, of how it has become part of the system of food production and distribution, and of how much it costs the environment. (And I’ve become more aware of the waste in my own practices of shopping, cooking, and eating). The long-term challenge is both reducing food waste, and getting food that is in the wrong place to people who can use it.
To answer the question everyone asks me as soon as I open my mouth, I am originally from Idaho, in the Rocky Mountains of the western USA. I came to the UK more than 35 years ago, and taught linguistics for many years at Lancaster University. I retired two years ago. When I am not volunteering, I like to walk and take photos.