Since 2016, Food Rescue US-DC, which is dedicated to eliminating hunger and food waste, has provided more than 6.8 million meals and saved more than 8.3 million pounds of food from landfills.
The nonprofit is an offshoot of Food Rescue US, a national program, that offers an app where businesses in the DMV can donate surplus food they would otherwise waste.
“We work with any business that has healthy, fresh food that they want to donate,” says Kate Urbank, site director for Food Rescue US-DC. “I make a connection to a nonprofit organization that feeds people who are food insecure within a 15-20-minute drive. So, it not only feeds hungry people, but it keeps food from going to waste.”
On Oct. 18, the nonprofit will host its second in-person fundraiser, “We Rescue 22!” from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Gallery O on H (1354 H St. NE). Tickets are $100.
“We are trying to really emphasize the food waste aspect of our work,” Urbank says. “For instance, I just dropped off 50 pounds of peaches at Atlas Brew Works, who is creating a stone fruit beer for us to emphasize how peaches can be salvaged and turned into beer.”
At the event, Chef Ryan Gordon, owner of The Queen Vic, and Chef Shorna Banerjee with FLICK Hospitality Group, will lead a cooking demo with whatever produce is rescued from Costco that morning.
“This is another way to show people what they can do with food that which otherwise, would have gone to waste,” Urbank says. “We also have a number of donors who donate throughout the year who are contributing.”
Noted D.C. podcaster Nycci Nellis, host of Foodie & the Beast and Industry Night, will serve as MC on the night.
Attendees will also enjoy specialty drinks and bites; music by a live jazz trio and a silent auction featuring exclusive items and experiences.
Some of the auction items include fine art, fine wine, a cigar and whiskey basket, tastings at local breweries, lower level tickets to a Caps/Penguins game, plus gift certificates to many area restaurants.
Food and beverages will be donated by Foxtrot Market, Lyon Bakery, Baked By Yael, Call Your Mother Deli, Vegetable + Butcher, Bethesda Bagels, The Queen Vic, Pie Shop, Compliments Only, District Donuts, Costco, District Fishwife, B.Lin Catering, Republic Restoratives, Atlas Brew Works, Jameson, Tito’s, ANXO Cider and Guinness.
“We also build community because we get people to go into neighborhoods they may not normally go to and have a deeper sense of the level of insecurity in the District or they think about how terrible it is to waste food,” Urbank says. “We’re not buying food; this is food that is available in the District, we find it, engage donors and our volunteers do the work.”
At the end of the night, guests will be encouraged to take a “to-go” box so all surplus food finds a home.
“This is going to be a celebration of the food rescue work that people do,” Urbank says. “It’s going to be a fun night and bring attention to the incredible work our volunteers do.”
For more information, visit foodrescue.us/site/food-rescue-us-dc.