Calgary (Rural Roots Canada) – Canada wastes an extraordinary amount of food every year. From the farm to the consumer, close to 60% of food is wasted or lost. Food produced but not eaten often ends up in landfills, creating methane, a greenhouse gas. Food waste accounts for 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions. 

A new documentary called Reduce, Reuse, Remuniate from Canadian Beef, a Canadian Cattle Association program, suggests a simple solution to help cut down on food waste – beef cows. 


There are numerous reasons why food is wasted, from throwing food scraps in the trash instead of organic waste bins to consumers not willing to buy strange-looking, damaged, or malformed produce. Whatever the reason, the short documentary highlights how beef farmers and ranchers can upcycle those strange, damaged and malformed crops by feeding them to the cows.

“I never thought I would see a cow eating dragonfruit,” says Bob Lowe, a Nanton, Alberta rancher featured in the documentary. “But I’ve seen it.” 

It’s perfectly edible food that, for one reason or another, consumers don’t like the look of it.” 

READ MORE: Passion for Reducing Food Waste Guides Kehinde

It also notes that crop by-products unsuitable for human consumption, such as canola meal, soybean hulls, and wheat chaff, can be fed to cattle to reduce waste further. 

The documentary premiered on YouTube on April 24, 2024, coinciding with “Stop Food Waste Day.”

Cows are having a moment when it comes to their ability to help the environment. Recently, new research revealed cattle grazing can help mitigate the effects of climate change. Cattle are also a potentially easy and effective solution to solving the issue of Canada’s disappearing grasslands. 

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