Food

The Secret Ingredient In This Ice Cream Is Garbage, But It All Makes Sense

When you order an ice cream cone, you expect it to taste like vanilla, chocolate, or caramel, right? Portland ice cream shop Salt & Straw has something else in mind.

Instead of creating flavors based on popular tastes, this company is developing their ice cream based on food waste. You read that right. Imagine a scoop of ice cream that tastes like recycled paper and rotting food scraps. No thanks!

Luckily, that's not what Salt & Straw has set out to do. For the month of June, they plan to create limited-edition flavors using excess, edible food from suppliers like the Portland Fruit Tree Project who distribute unused food to the needy. In so doing, they hope to raise awareness about food waste and hunger as well as make use of food scraps that would otherwise be needlessly thrown out.

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“We were really struck by the idea that we waste 40 percent of our food in the United States, and that children in our cities are going hungry,” Salt & Straw founder Kim Malek said. “If we were able to use that food, we could wipe out hunger.”

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You only need to work a shift in a grocery store or restaurant to find out how much perfectly good food is thrown away. Oftentimes, a whole carton of strawberries is thrown out if only one of them is rotten. And that's not the only problem. Many vegetables and fruits are tossed for cosmetic reasons - a slightly deformed carrot might become garbage because it's not "perfect" enough.

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"It’s possible to make something incredible and fun out of something that was going to be wasted,” said Tyler Malek, head ice cream maker at Salt & Straw.

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You might be wondering what kind of ice cream flavors can be made from food waste. It's not carrot and rotten tomato flavor, we assure you! Salt & Straw's June "food waste flavors" will include scrumptious additions like Apple Butter, Second-Steeped Rum Spices, and Spent Brewer’s Malts & Candied Bacon S’mores.

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If you want to try a scoop, visit Salt & Straw locations in Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Let us know! Would you try this ice cream made from food scraps? Leave a comment and SHARE this post!  

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