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Why You, Too, Should Love Ugly Fruit

Activist Isabel Soares explains in this talk from MAD4 how she saved 41 tons of food waste.

At this year's MAD4 conference in Copenhagen, Portuguese activist Isabel Soares discussed her cooperative Fruta Feia and what her team is doing to reduce food waste. Fruta Feia — which translates to "ugly fruit" — works to save perfectly fine fruits and vegetables that have been rejected by large distributors because they are not beautiful.

Soares explains that fruit and vegetable distributors have a preference for produce that is "perfect" and meets certain "aesthetic standards." This leads to a lot of waste: In Europe, about 30 percent of the fruit and vegetables that is grown is thrown out because it is not pretty enough. Soares saves this "ugly fruit" and sells it to members of the cooperative: So far, it's been quite a success and Fruta Feia has managed to save 41 tons of food from being thrown out unnecessarily. Go, watch the the talk and seek out those multi-pronged carrots and oddly shaped strawberries — they're good for you, and the environment.