Would You Eat a Stranger’s Leftovers?

By Joanna Prisco

Aug 16, 2013 4:23pm
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We’ve all done it. While cooking for oneself or one’s family, it’s easy to overestimate how much to prepare – leaving an excess of leftovers destined for Tupperware containers or the trash.

But a popular online service overseas seeks to find a new home for extra food by allowing home cooks to sell second helpings to neighbors. And now the site is making its way to the U.S.

Shareyourmeal is a Dutch website launched by Marieke Hart and Jan Thij Bakker designed to connect hungry folks with locals who have lots of leftovers. The food-focused social media site has gone gangbusters in its native Netherlands, where thousands of participants have exchanged more than 73,000 meals, according to the Shareyourmeal site.

Soon, an American version will be made available to New Yorkers and San Franciscans.

The way the site works is fairly simple. Home cooks register their over-prepared dish, including ingredient information, number of servings and availability for pickup. If the offerings appeal, a buyer can click “order” and arrange to swing by bearing containers and payment for the food. A list of rules and instructions are also provided to participants to ensure the safety, cleanliness and satisfaction of all involved.

Proponents of the social food-sharing platform say not only does the service prevent food waste, but it promotes community building among food lovers who might not have met otherwise.

Would you pay to eat some of your neighbor’s leftovers? Or do you find the prospect utterly gross. Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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