The Pig Idea

14th August 2013

Up to half of the entire food supply in the UK, USA and Europe is wasted each year. The waste from the US alone (40 million tonnes) would have the capacity to feed the one billion malnourished people in the world.

Feeding the 5000 is a movement which aims to tackle this global issue of food waste. One of their projects is The Pig Idea where 8 pigs are being reared on the beautiful Stepney City Farm plot in East London, where the urban truly does meet the rural. These pigs aren’t just your bog-standard pigs though, the idea behind The Pig Idea is that they are reared purely on waste food, and predominantly locally sourced waste food.


FarmDrop’s George visited Edd Colbert, one of campaign’s coordinators, at the Stepney City Farm to chat about The Pig Idea.

Upon arrival at the farm, it was feeding time, and the 8-strong herd of porkers gobbled their way through a large portion of okara. Okara is otherwise known as soybean pulp, which is produced during the production process of soy milk and tofu.  The Pig Idea source their okara from London’s only organic tofu producer Clean Bean who produce up to 6 sacks full of okara each day.


Safe to say, they loved the stuff. They love it to the point where when they were given regular (boring) pig feed last week, they turned their snouts up at it and refused to eat it.

Since the Foot and Mouth outbreak in 2001, which had devastating consequences for our livestock, politicians have kept a ban on the use of catering waste as animal feed. However, The Pig Idea propose that as long the waste food is prepared properly (cooked and treated), it is 100% safe for animals to eat.

This makes it easier, cheaper and more sustainable for producers and caters to dispose of their food waste. At the same time, it protects landscapes and biodiversity in areas across the world that are being ferociously deforested to create space to grow crops that are used purely for the production of feed for our livestock.

To find out more about The Pig Idea please check out their website and Twitter feed.     @ThePigIdea

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