Food banks are overrun and hunger in America is as rampant as the food we waste. As a young girl, Christine Schoefer saw the difference between too little and too much.
I wanted an apple for my morning muesli but the only one left had three soft brown spots. Normally, I would have tossed it out. But these were COVID-19 times. And I was doubly hobbled because a freak fall had broken my fibula bone. I needed an orthopedic boot just to stand up. Forget making a quick trip to the store.
I cut the blemishes away and grated my apple. It was delicious. And it made me think: How did I become someone who threw away food so easily?
Growing up in Berlin in the long shadow of World War II, I learned that food was precious. Nothing was tossed out. Every plate was cleared.
My mother shopped with just a string bag. Then she remarried and we moved to the United States. The neighborhood supermarket in St. Paul was a miracle; shelves of cereal boxes, pyramids of canned peas, piles of watermelons, an expanse of red meats, stacks of candy bars. I was awestruck.