Former Trader Joe President Opens Store Selling Expired Food Only, With Plans to Make Healthy Living Cheap

Jan 23, 2014 12:13 PM EST | By Dina Exil

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Doug Ranch to open grocery store and restaurant in Dorchester, Massachusetts, dedicated to offering nutritious, inexpensive and perfectly edible food. (Photo : Flickr)

The former president of Trader Joe's, Doug Rauch, is sharing his solution to the massive amount of food wasted by Americans every year.

According to FOX News, in May Rauch will be launching The Daily Table, a grocery store and restaurant in Dorchester, Massachusetts, dedicated to offering nutritious, inexpensive and edible food considered "'unsellable' by regular grocery stores," because of its date label.

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Based on a survey by the Food Marketing Institute, 9 out of 10 Americans throw away food needlessly. This contributes to $165 billion or 40 percent of food wasted every year.

FOX reported that Rauch's mission is to provide healthy meals to the working Americans by selling expired foods at the same price of junk food. Ranch told Salon that his target is the 15 percent of American households that are suffering from "food insecure."

The former president called expired food an "under realized asset" that's essential in helping solve America's reported hunger situation.

"Most families know that they're not giving their kids the nutrition they need. But they just can't afford it, they don't have an option," Rauch recently told Salon.

The Daily Table will offer fruits and vegetables just a few days shy of their sell-by dates. Some will be re-purposed food will be made into hot meals. Products that have damaged packaging but are suitable to eat will also be sold.

According a study from the Natural Resources Defense Council, due to uncertainty about the different labels including "best by", "use by", and "best before" customers are wasting food that has not actually gone bad or eating food that's no longer safe to consume.

"In the old days, you'd smell the milk; it smelled good or smelled bad," Rauch told the New York Times in November. "People worry about food-safety issues, and E coli or salmonella. [But] virtually all of the known food-related deaths in America have been caused by food that was in code."

Despite the reported benefits, Ranch said he's had a hard time trying to get customers to believe that expired foods are edible, regardless of their outer appearance.  

"It's not trash," Dana Gunders with the Natural Resources Defense Council said. "That food's good, and I would eat it and I do eat it. To throw it away, particularly the more nutritious stuff, is a shame."

Would you go shopping at The Daily Table? 

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