Dumpster Diving

Move along, nothing to see here!
theanimal
Posts: 1610
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
Location: AK
Contact:

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by theanimal »

http://www.grubstreet.com/2013/09/daily ... -food.html

Trader Joe's Ex-President will be opening up a new grocery store, The Daily Table in Massachusetts, sometime in the next year that will sell expired food for low prices.

Seems like it could be an EREr's best friend.

From the article:
Next year, Doug Rauch will open the Daily Table, a grocery store that takes gleaning to the next level by dealing almost exclusively in goods that have passed their sell-by date at discounted, fast-food-level prices. No, this is not an underhanded way to make money, Rauch says: For starters, the Dorchester, Massachusetts, store's focus on fruits and vegetables that are not cosmetically up to other outlet's standards is a way of addressing the monumental amount of domestic food waste....

...So a business plan that includes cooking a bunch of expired products and serving them in hot bars may seem at first like a cringe-inducing scam, but Rauch claims the Daily Table will be using a tactic already commonly employed by food banks and certain not-to-be-named grocery stores. The real goal of the project is to provide a source of nutritious food to an underserved area....

User avatar
C40
Posts: 2547
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:30 am

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by C40 »

Does anyone know anyone in St Louis with dumpster diving experience? I've been thinking about taking the plunge and, if available, could use guidance.

User avatar
jennypenny
Posts: 6636
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:20 pm
Location: Stepford USA

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by jennypenny »

A local freegan group would have the best info. STL must have one.

User avatar
Sclass
Posts: 2065
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:15 pm
Location: Orange County, CA

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Sclass »

Whoa, you all are really into this.

I had an eccentric grandparent who dove for food. My mom had a fit when he fed me some of the fruit. It was ripe.

The best diving I did was at HP and some other tech companies in Silicon Valley. I used to hit the metal recycling bins and strip micrometers, linear bearings, servo motors and optical mounts from trashed items. I took them straight to eBay. I had simple tools to strip off the treasure from the trash.

As a biodiesel user I have dumpster dived in grease barrels in the past. I'd bring a five gallon white pail (found in a restaurant dumpster) and a one gallon milk jug with the neck cut off. No portable electric pump could transfer oil as fast as my milk jug ladle. One gallon every ten seconds. I'd fill my five gallons in less than a minute and scurry off. I had to quit as the grease wars ramped up. Getting my butt kicked at a dumpster over twenty five bucks of fuel wasn't worth it. The worst critter I encountered was a toothless tweeker who crawled out from under a mound of trash she'd been using for bedding. She scared the crap out of me. I gave her a few bucks and told her to get a hash brown at mcd.

Those cheese stories made me hungry.


JamesR
Posts: 940
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:08 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by JamesR »

Sure would be funny to achieve ERE in one year (from zero), by dumpster diving and hitting $250k.

theanimal
Posts: 1610
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
Location: AK
Contact:

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by theanimal »

That article got me all excited. I had to give it a go. I just got back from checking out Home Depot, Best Buy, Office Max and Wal Mart. What a disappointment. I didn't expect much from Wal-Mart, but the others were awful. Absolutely no access. Home Depot's dumpsters were behind a locked, 20 ft high fence. Best Buy and Office Max had giant, completely enclosed dumpsters. Wal Mart's were locked and there were a ton of cameras. I figured I'd stop by the grocery store on my way back and nab something in order to make the trip worthwhile. Another completely enclosed dumpster. Unbelievable! Why are people so protective of their garbage?!


There is another shopping area with a Home Depot, Best Buy and Office Max close by. I may have to check that out tomorrow night. Hopefully, it won't be a waste of time. ;)

Chad
Posts: 3847
Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 3:10 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Chad »

theanimal wrote: Why are people so protective of their garbage?!
Probably because they know a lot of it isn't garabage to most people, just to them.

User avatar
Sclass
Posts: 2065
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:15 pm
Location: Orange County, CA

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Sclass »

I used to dive for tech stuff at an HP site (in this thread). Dumpster got locked eventually. scrapper probably noticed a steep decline in the quality of trash.

I also realized one day it was dangerous when some heavy stuff collapsed under me in the bin and there were sharp beams all around. Had I been in the wrong spot I could've been run through. Diver beware.

My experience grease scavenging behind restaurants had the same outcome. The renderers locked the bins or worse, caught me once and gave me quite a scare for siphoning off their liquid gold. Just because they got it free didn't mean they weren't selling it to make your cosmetics and soap products.

Chad nailed it.

Article was damn good though.

A friend who still does this in Silicon Valley dumpsters got some lab equipment that set off his Geiger counter recently. Apparently clean lab ware wasn't clean. Diver beware.

George the original one
Posts: 5369
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:28 am
Location: Wettest corner of Orygun

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by George the original one »

Chad wrote:
theanimal wrote: Why are people so protective of their garbage?!
Probably because they know a lot of it isn't garabage to most people, just to them.
There's also the "prudent man" argument. If the garbage is easily accessed and someone gets injured while looting it, then it opens the owner up to a liability suit. If the trash is locked, no matter how feebly, then it isn't an open invitation for looting (an "attractive nuisance", I think is the phrase?). Same reason that swimming pools are usually surrounded by a small fence. Thus a "prudent man" would lock up their dustbin.
Last edited by George the original one on Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

DSKla
Posts: 248
Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2014 11:07 am

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by DSKla »

This thread has me wanting to try looking for resellables (not food). I'm thinking that since the big retailers have caught on, best bets are colleges during move-out, and those big temporary bins people use during contstruction. Maybe office buildings for office supplies?

walker
Posts: 69
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:46 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by walker »

In keeping with the theme of this thread, I'll just leave these out for anyone who wants them:

Dumpster Diving Subreddit - active & detailed

Dumpster Diver's Paradise Forum - haven't checked this out but it comes recommended

JamesR
Posts: 940
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:08 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by JamesR »

The reddit link led me to threads about the potential-$250k dumpster diving article http://www.reddit.com/r/DumpsterDiving/ ... gs_2500_a/ and http://www.reddit.com/r/DumpsterDiving/ ... sands_off/

Conclusion: dumpster diving is nowhere near that easy, article was probably inflating numbers/ease somewhat.

User avatar
Ego
Posts: 4911
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:42 am

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Ego »


Colibri
Posts: 77
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:26 am
Location: Northern Canada

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Colibri »

I have been thinking about dumpster diving for a few years now but really got the courage to actually try it just about 6 months ago. I got even more interested after watching this fall the documentary "Just it eat, a food waste story" by Grant Baldwin and Jen Rustemeyer.

There is a small grocery store about 2kms from my place, this is where I go for DD. It is quite easy now that the city require all grocery store/restaurants to sort their waste and use a dedicated bin for compost. I went there tonight, shortly after they closed. The bin is not locked and is in plain sight, I bring a small scooper and a head lamp. I feel so badass !

I got some green beans, brussels sprouts, baby carrots and one prune. As safety measures, I always clean with water everything I get first and then I cook everything in boiling water for 10 minutes. This will make a nice salad with homemade mustard based dressing. Bon appétit !

Loner
Posts: 165
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:26 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Loner »

Great! That's a good quantity of stuff right there. That law makes it really convenient indeed. Hope you'll find more.

A year or two ago, here in suburbia, I went to all the supermarkets around to see if could find anything, but they dump everything into (locked) compactors. I guess I could see this as an opportunity to learn lock picking, but I'm not there yet.

Colibri
Posts: 77
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:26 am
Location: Northern Canada

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Colibri »

Looks like the big box stores keep their bins locked or secured behind fences. Try the smaller shops or maybe even convenience store/dépanneur ? They seem to be more liberal about their garbage. I don't know if this is common everywhere but I found that chinese restaurants have a lot of food waste in their bins.

Going to the Free store tomorrow, dumping stuff and hopefully to find treasures too.

EdithKeeler
Posts: 1071
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:55 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by EdithKeeler »

I’ve dumpster dived (dove?) before, semi regularly, years ago. Mostly just for fun, see what I could find. I remember 2 particularly good hauls: one, from aBarnes and Nobel that was closing/had just closed. About three weeks in a row I got all kinds of books (a few of which I ended up selling on Half.com), lots of stuff like calendars and note pads, stuff like that, and magazines. I think I just happened to catch the last three weeks of the store clean out and it was all the stuff they couldn’t send back. I think typically they rip the covers off, but that didn’t happen. Lucky!!

My other lucky haul was at a Dollar Store near my house. I actually WAS looking for boxes (the excuse you use when questioned re your diving), and found a ton of Christmas candy. Just bags and bags and bags. It looked like when they opened the carton, and maybe even more than one (?) they had sliced right into the bags. So they couldn’t sell the bags of candy, but all the candy inside was individually wrapped. Same dive I found a whole bunch of very slightly dented cans of food. I generally avoid dented cans, but these were just barely marred. Corn, beans, Spam... all kinds of stuff. Lucky again.

It’s fun to dive, but I’m pretty “surface” about it. If it’s not easy, I don’t bother.

Not dumpster diving, but I’ve been known to pick up stuff on trash day—curbside shopping. I got a very nice rug that I had cleaned and used for years, also a super nice antique gateleg table. It has a big, pretty deep scratch on one side, but other than that, it’s super nice. The scratched side is against the wall, and it’s my TV stand.

I also was out walking my dog one night and someone had been evicted from their VERY BIG rental home. The family had a truck and had just finished loading up their truck, but there was still a huge pile of stuff. I asked them about it, and it belonged to “the roommate” who didn’t want it. I kept an eye on the pile until the morning of trash day and picked through it. Tons of new athletic clothes, some with tags still on, in a variety of sizes. Plus brand new kids clothes. I packed it in my car and took it to Catholic Charities. It just seemed wasteful to let the garbage guys take it. Always wondered what the story was there.

Loner
Posts: 165
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:26 pm

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Loner »

@Colibri Sorry for the delay, was swamped with work. Yes, good advice. It's true that I looked only behind the big(ger) stores. I'll have a look at smaller ones when I'll pass in front of them.

Re: Picking up trash -> A guy I've spoken to who does that as a hobby gave me a trick. If you want to pick up something, but cannot do it in the moment (your hands are full, you need to get your car, etc.), remove a critical part of the thingy (leave with a wheel if it's a bicycle, or the plug/extension if it's a sewing machine, etc.). Other people are less likely to take it.

Jason

Re: Dumpster Diving

Post by Jason »

I've read too many stories of bears and crackheads getting stuck in dumpsters too ever risk diving into one. It's just not the kind of company I'm looking to keep at this stage in my life. When I was younger, maybe. Not to mention bears are scary enough. So you have to think a crack bear would be even more frightening.

Post Reply