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Creating new products from food waste

Rubies in the Rubble creates new products from unused fruit and veg.

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I came across Rubies in the Rubble a while back, and was impressed by their approach. They single-handedly started going round the farms around London and collecting their surplus fruit and veg - the products that would not be used, for reasons including growing more than they could use, and cosmetic imperfections. Farmers were happy to give them the products at reduced rates, and glad someone would use them. Now, Rubies in the Rubble chutneys are sold in major food stores, as a premium brand, and are doing very well. They are working to help reimagine food 'waste', showing how it can be a powerful resource, and hoping to branch out into more products soon.

What is a provocation or insight that might inspire others during this challenge?

Rubies in the Rubble have rightly pointed out that quite often the products we talk about are not waste, just surplus. It follows that an important part of tackling the broader issue is a mind-set (and labelling) change. This is also true for near expiry foods, as sold by Both companies are working actively to educate and bring about behaviour change in the end user.

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I work with socially driven startups to help them develop as a business, including developing their ideas, finding their first customers, and telling their story effectively.

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CommonWealth Kitchen!