Batavia's Green Movie features 'Wasted! The Story of Food Waste'

  • "Wasted! The Story of Food Waste" will be shown at the Batavia's 10th annual A Green Night Out at the Movies on Saturday, March 10.

    "Wasted! The Story of Food Waste" will be shown at the Batavia's 10th annual A Green Night Out at the Movies on Saturday, March 10. Courtesy of Wasted!

Submitted by Carolyn Burnham
Updated 3/8/2018 9:28 PM

Why should we care about wasted food? Many people don't realize decaying organic matter in landfills are a huge source of the greenhouse gas methane. In 2015, the EPA and USDA announced a goal of reducing food loss and waste by 50 percent by 2030.

"Let's feed people, not landfills," stated EPA administrator Gina McCarthy. "By reducing wasted food in landfills, we cut harmful methane emissions that fuel climate change, conserve our natural resources, and protect our planet for future generations."


"If people want to do something about climate change, managing our food waste is an easy way we can help," said event organizer Carolyn Burnham. "Not only that, reducing food waste and diverting it to those in need can make a huge economic and social impact in our communities."

On Saturday, March 10, Batavia Environmental Commission and Advanced Disposal invite the public to attend Batavia's 10th annual A Green Night Out at the Movies. This free event will feature the documentary film "Wasted! The Story of Food Waste," free popcorn and drinks, an expo of local eco groups and businesses and a lively panel discussion about what we can do about food waste afterward. It will begin with an Eco Expo at 6 p.m. at the Batavia City Hall, 100 N. Island Ave. It will be followed by the movie and presentation at 7 p.m.

"Wasted! The Story of Food Waste" aims to change the way people buy, cook, recycle, and eat food. "Wasted!" exposes the criminality of food waste and how it's directly contributing to climate change.

Through the eyes of chef like Anthony Bourdain, Dan Barber, Massimo Bottura, and Danny Bowien, audiences will see how the world's most influential chefs make the most of every kind of food, transforming what most people consider scraps into incredible dishes that create a more secure food system.

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"Wasted!" shows how any action -- no matter how small -- can lead to new ways of using more food, feeding more people, curbing environmental damage, stimulating technology and business, and ultimately improving the health and well-being of all citizens worldwide.

After the movie, Abby Beck of the Batavia Environmental Commission will moderate a panel discussion.

"We are very excited to have assembled a diverse panel to discuss the many issues in this movie," Beck said. They are pleased to welcome the following participants:

• Tish Powell is the municipal marketing manager with Advanced Disposal where she serves as the primary liaison between Advanced Disposal and current municipal customers. Affectionately known as the "Trash Diva", Tish has over 20 years of public sector experience managing and developing municipal waste, recycling and sustainability programs, including over seven years with the City of Kalamazoo, Mich., and over nine years with the City of Elgin.

A local elected official, Tish is currently serving in her second term as a member of the Elgin City Council. This combination of experience gives Tish a valuable perspective providing innovative, sustainable and cost-effective waste, recycling and organics collection solutions for municipalities, residents and businesses.


• Betsy Zinser began her work as executive director of the Batavia Interfaith Food Pantry and Clothes Closet in early 2016. She was one of the founders of the Batavia Environmental Commission and served on the commission for 3 years. She has also served as a board member of Fermilab Natural Areas and was on the leadership committee of the Batavia Community Garden and Batavians for Clean Energy and Conservation. Her work in Batavia has included advocacy for backyard hens, protection of the Mill Creek watershed and opposition to investment in the Prairie State coal plant in Southern Illinois.

• Katie Palomares and her husband, Carlos, started Mighty Greens Farm in 2014. On the farm, they grow a wide variety of vegetables throughout the season and have a heated greenhouse which allows them to provide the community with fresh, local greens all year long. Katie is currently attending NIU to complete a master's degree in nutrition. She believes that eating healthy doesn't need to be a chore but rather a joyful (and tasty) experience that begins with the seeds we sow.

The public is invited to ask questions at the panel discussion. According to Burnham, "this movie will bring up a subject that many people probably haven't thought about, and our panelist can help residents answer questions about what they can do next."

Everyone attending is also invited to clean out their cupboards and bring a donation for the Batavia Interfaith Food Bank to the event.


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