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Free milk and potatoes in the U.S. to avoid waste

Video Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on May 8, 2020 - Duration: 01:28s

Free milk and potatoes in the U.S. to avoid waste

In Washington State and Boston, two initiatives are helping prevent potatoes from being thrown out and milk from being poured down the drain.

Gavino Garay has more.

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Free milk and potatoes in the U.S. to avoid waste

A disruption in the supply chain has caused an enormous surplus of potatoes in Washington state, and rather than throwing out good food that would otherwise go to rot, the Washington State Potato Commission is giving out bags and bags of spuds to cut down on waste.

Just to give a sense of the immense scale of this surplus, the commission said that everyone in Washington state would have to eat about 500 pounds of potatoes from now until the 4th of July to clear it all out.

The russet potatoes, normally processed into French fries and hash browns, are sitting in warehouses that would typically be empty ahead of the July harvest.

In the city of Auburn just south of Seattle, workers loaded up bags and bags of potatoes via a 'drive thru' to comply with social distancing and with the appropriate protocols.

Clear across the country in Boston, a similar act of solidarity.

The Massachusetts Army National Guard distributed free milk -- that otherwise would have been poured down the drain due to low demand -- to people in Boston at another drive-up event.

Mass closures of restaurants and schools due to social distancing efforts have forced a shift from wholesale food-service markets to retail, creating logistical and packaging nightmares for plants processing milk and other foods.

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