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Why do bakeries throw away so much good food at the end of the day instead of donating it?

I will answer - and I hate to do so, because it upsets me every day,

The restaurant I run has to literally throw away sometimes $10 000 worth of cooked food a day because the charities REFUSE to accept the food.

We have award winning chefs and cooks prepare our meals - and we have won NUMEROUS awards.

Many times if the company goes on a catering event - during which we handle large accounts, the businesses don’t bother to take the left over food after catering and there is still a truckload left.

The guests barely eat a plate and we have table of servings which never get served at all.

The guests barely eat and now we have a van full of food in our warmers, trays, fridges which we spent the time preparing with care - for hours or days upon end.

The staff takes some home - but there are many times so much is left that it can fill a walk in fridge several times over.

We can not serve most of that food to our next clients because it is not in the contract - which leaves PLENTY of food uneaten and fully available to be given for charity or donation.

I have called many many many times to the Salvation Army and other homeless shelters and charities - and they will not pick it up unless it is not prepared (basically it has to be groceries prior to being cooked or prepped) - which makes no sense; because if we have the groceries - then they will be used for the catering event.

Often we have hundreds of racks of ribs, beef brisquit, pork, soups, baked goods or cooked chicken or large bowls of salad, fresh baked bread, sliced vegetables or fruit - like earlier posted…enough to fill a walk in fridge several times - and this is the leftover uneaten food which was never put onto anybody’s plate.

The charities refuse to take them because it was already cooked…even if it’s only an hour old, they won’t touch it.

They say for health reasons…which is bullshit - because I and my team are very concerned about food safety ourselves - and would never serve food which is going bad in any fashion.

However, Salvation Army won’t even consider it - even though they turn away several hundred people a day from their food lines.

What we have left over is among the best food you will ever eat - and sadly we can’t set up tables in a park and serve it to homeless or poor - because our business license will be taken away.

Shelters won’t take the food, Salvation Army won’t take the food - and we have next to no place to keep storing it.

I have tried for weeks upon end to try to give this food away - which nobody will accept.

I ended up giving away three or four vans full of food to friends so that they could give them to homeless people…but it can’t always be convenient for everybody involved.

It upsets me greatly - because we have to buy that much in order to complete the catering contract, but we have far too much waste which is just insane.

There are thousands of people who can barely feed themselves in my city - but I can’t give it away without risk of losing the business, going to jail and getting fined massive amounts from the city.

I can’t set up a table in a park and have people come there - so unfortunately, most of it has to be dumped…

I can’t resell it for the next catering event.

It ends up costing sometimes 30 000$ a week when we have a large event - and even the news stations, papers and media will not help in solving the problem.

I have gone many times to the low income area of the city and just unloaded as much as I can to feed people - but I don’t always have the time to do so or the means to do it.

Sadly this is what happens in my city…so called “The Most GREEN City in the World” - Vancouver!

It’s bullshit.

Our company can not freeze it, we can not resell it, we can not store it, we can’t give it away and nobody will come to take it - so we have massive bins which get emptied every two days which are full of fantastic absolutely awesome food which had to be binned. (Part of the Health and Safety regulations for Vancouver and area)

It’s a crime that this happens and I feel bad every day, but I have made efforts - which sadly never transpire to develop into anything to solve the homeless and low income issue.

City hall and government will not change their stance on this matter - and because of this reason, we have thousands of homeless people or low income struggling to eat a healthy meal - when I have to toss out thousands of dollars worth of food on a daily basis.

Police will shut down any event where we set up tables which serve food.

I do what I can with the leftovers - but I do know that the seagulls, rats, mice, ants, worms and all the other animals and insects are eating heartily at the dump - because they are getting the best food that money can buy, made by the best cooks that money can hire.

The film companies in this city operate the same way when the catering trucks have left-overs…and it’s all good stuff.

The birds in this town eat far better then the people do most of the times.

Meals which take 12 hours to prepare are unfortunately trashed because of government bullshit - and the people in this city are the ones who suffer on part of these rules and regulations.

If I could somehow ship this overseas to Africa and other poor nations of the world, I would gladly do so.

UPDATE:
As of September 1, 2018 - I have left that company and no longer have to deal with that kind of insanity.

The crew I worked with has also left a few days after I did - and the GENERAL OPERATIONS MANAGER was fired a week after I departed.

I have been through many arguments with the manager over this issue and many others and was unwilling to deal with as much stupidity and bad decision making as I have in the past two years.

The manager who should not have been in any capacity near making those decisions had put the company into chaos and ruin financially and has since left (due to being fired) to cause more confusion at some other business.

I wish them well, but not too much - because they ignored not only me, but some other people who knew how to deal with these situations and a whole bunch of other problems.

I start my new job today - and in a few hours of this posting, I will be working with something that is not nearly as chaotic and hopefully, I will not have to deal with an issue like this again.

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