Upcycled Treats From Food Waste?

Date posted: Friday 28 May 2021

Are you ready for something like "upcycled food"? I hope that the concept at least makes you curious to learn more. I was surprised and delighted to read an article recently in the IMPACT magazine about “ReToast” from the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences at the University of Minnesota.


The snack is made with 30 percent upcycled ingredients from bread scraps and brewers spent grain. The food science and nutrition students wanted to create a snack that is not only better for people but better for the planet. I already knew that over 40% of food produced in the U.S. gets wasted, but was surprised to learn that bread is the most wasted food product.


The students also wanted to incorporate Kernza** as a locally sustainably sourced ingredient. They collected leftover bread scraps from local bakeries and found a process to make the scraps safe and nutritive. The combination of care for creation and technical skills made the “new” product possible. Our world will need to learn new techniques like this if we are to cut food waste in the long run and work together in new ways to end hunger.


The student team at the U of M hopes to make ReToast a commercial product in the future. I think I might be tempted to try some; the photo of the cinnamon spice flavored toast looked more than a little appealing. Keep an eye out for it; I will.


-Vernita Kennen

Incarnation, Shoreview


**Click here to read Vernita's blog about Kernza® perennial grain!**