Dumpster Diving Makes for Free Food Picking

The Gatherer explains how you can dumpster dive to collect free usable food from the back of your local grocery store.

| November/December 1970

  • Dumpsters behind grocery stores
    Next time you go shopping, take a peek around back of your favorite market . .. . around where the garbage cans are kept.

  • Dumpsters behind grocery stores

Reprinted with permission from Innovator.

Some things may be rotten, the bread is always "day-old", most likely there won't be a meat department nor any sundries, the hours might not be the most convenient and if you don't find something you want no one will help you. It's cold winter and hot in summer and if it's raining you'll need to keep your raincoat on. Finally, at the out you do your own boxing and receive no Blue Chip stamps! But before you pass by this grocery consider its positive aspects: The fruit is riper at other markets. The lettuce is the most vitamin rich to be found anywhere. Most likely there not be a long line to wait on.

The main advantage, however, is that the grocery of which I speak has neither cash register nor checker: All you wish to take is yours, gratis!

Depending upon your needs, tastes, inhibitions inclinations you can do all, some, or none of 5 food shopping at the "gratis grocery".

Next time you go shopping, take a peek around back of your favorite market . .. . around where the garbage cans are kept. Do it BEFORE you do your regular shopping and—possibly—you'll fill some of your needs. Don't be discouraged if you fail to find anything the first time. Try to learn when the cans are filled and set out and the schedule of the trash collector. You probably won't have to worry about other foragers because their numbers are negligible.

When you come upon full trash cans (or shall we call them "blemished food bins" . . . one man's trash being another man's treasure), roll up your sleeves (I forgot to tell you to wear your grubbies) and inspect the contents.

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