why food is wasted

Today 1 out of 3 pieces of fruits and vegetables are discarded because of unfair beauty standards, overproduction and inefficiencies in our food system.
So what's ugly?
Overproduced
41%
cancelled orders
4%
mislabelled
1%
scratched on the surface
22%
might need a few days on the shelf
1%
too big
14%
too small
12%
wrongly coloured
2%
misshapen
2%
very ripe
1%
A bunch of cauliflowers with leaves and a few brown marks

WE’VE CREATED 3.8 M DKK INCOME FOR FARMS

The European Union has a system that rates the quality of fruit and vegetables according to how perfect they look. What you’ll usually get in the supermarket is per definition “uniform in size, shape and colour”. As a result, produce that falls outside this beauty norm is significantly harder for farmers to sell and results in large amounts of food going to waste. 

Why? Supermarkets still hold the most buying power and can say no to whatever suits them. Together with consumer’s expectations of how food should look like, 30% of what’s grown is never sold.

EAT GRIM is changing that. We buy whatever farmers normally can’t sell for a fair price and make delicious food boxes that we ship straight to your door.

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“We are so rich in Denmark that we have plenty of everything and can say no to whatever suits us”

Per, owner of Østerkrog gartneri, who had 17 000 cauliflower heads rejected at a supermarket because of small brown spots

Our food choices impact the climate

Food waste is responsible for around 6% of the world's green house gas emissions. Globally, about 18% of the world’s freshwater use and 25% of agricultural land goes to grow food we don’t eat. At the same time we are worried that we don’t have enough food for the growing population. 

Eliminating food waste is considered the third most impactful solution to solve climate change. Why? When you eat a GRIM apple, you actually remove demand for growing one elsewhere. By bringing produce that would otherwise be wasted, back on people's plates, we feed more people without increasing food production and its harmful effects on the planet. 

We’ve decided to calculate our impact to help you change your habits for the better.

Image of many different dishes of food

Our impact since July 2018

together we've

Saved 400.985 tons of food
Saved 152.469 tons of CO2 equivalents
Saved 67.9 million litres of fresh water withdrawals
Saved 448.7 thousand m2 per year of land
Created over 3.8 million DKK income for farmers

Our impact calculations

Each GRIM box gives you a delicious variety of climate-friendly fruit and veggies to substitute part of the fresh produce you would buy in the supermarket.
1kg GRIM food saves 0,4kg CO2e

Agriculture harms the planet by emitting different kinds of greenhouse gasses that have global warming potential. Food production accounts for over a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions and has been named the single largest threat to planetary health. 

For this report, we collect these gasses under the common denominator CO2 equivalents (short, CO2e). We look at how much CO2e similar food categories emit to compare it to what we’ve had in your GRIM boxes throughout the year. This way, we can calculate how much CO2e on average each kg of GRIM fruits and vegetables emits, which helps us determine how much CO2e each GRIM box saves the planet. 

The produce in your box is categorised into salad & root veggies, kale & cabbage and Nordic & exotic fruit. We use categorisation because there is a significant difference in the climate impact of different kinds of produce. Read the full report including the exact CO2e calculations here. 

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A tree in nature, with a dark cloud of smoke coming closer from the left
1kg GRIM food saves 177L freshwater

70% of global freshwater withdrawals are taken from ground or surface water sources, such as rivers or lakes and used for agriculture. The risk of water scarcity is now a common concern around the globe. Food we don’t eat wastes 18% of all freshwater resources. 

By looking at data of how much freshwater withdrawals each different food category consumes, we can calculate how many litres of freshwater each kg of GRIM fruit and vegetables, and therefore each GRIM box saves per year. The  full report including the exact calculations on freshwater usage is available here.

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Rushing waves of water in the sea
1kg GRIM food saves 1.18m2 land

Half of the world’s habitable land is used for growing food. Around 25% of the world’s arable land is currently occupied to produce food that is ultimately never consumed. At the same time, the expansion of agriculture is transforming habitats. Of the 28,000 species evaluated to be threatened with extinction on the IUCN Red List, agriculture is listed as a threat for 24,000 of them.

By looking at data of how many square meters of land are needed to grow different food categories each year, we can calculate how much land each kg of GRIM fruit and veggies occupy for growing, and therefore how much land each GRIM box saves per year. The full report including the exact calculations on land usage is available here.

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A monkey sitting in a tree with many leaves
About this report

This report has been made in collaboration with Barnemad, who helped us estimate our impact and calculate how much you save by being part of the EAT GRIM community. 

Calculating climate impact is not an exact science. We have to work with data available to us, and sometimes local data is missing or data is old. But we always want to do better, so if you have feedback or questions, please tell us. We strongly believe that it is better to start measuring our impact, knowing that data might be slightly off, than not acting at all. Measuring climate impact is an important step towards changing our behaviour for the better. 

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Neon sign spelling "Think about things differently" - With the "differently" written upside down
Climate-friendly food choices

If you want to change your eating habits, a good place to start is simply by eating more vegetables. In general vegetables produce far less greenhouse gasses than meat and dairy, consume less land and require less freshwater to produce. You can still eat meat and dairy products though. The Eat-Lancet commission recommends an average of 70 grams of meat per day. For inspiration on how to cook with vegetables, check out our cooking blog.

If you want to live even more climate friendly, it’s a good idea to pick produce that is grown outside over commercial greenhouse veggies, which often takes up a lot of energy to uphold. On the contrary, transport emissions only account for ca. 6% of the carbon footprint of food. That means you shouldn’t worry about eating Spanish oranges or Italian olive oil, as emissions from road, rail or sea and inland water transport is much lower and more common than air travel. However, avoid foods that have a very short shelf-life and have traveled a long way. The best tip we can give you: Eat with the season and enjoy produce at its best :)

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A dish of food served in nature, with white flowers in the background