‘Been a Slice’ beer brewed from bread supports Toronto’s Second Harvest

Second Harvest says the Been a Slice beer will be on shelves starting during the first week of November. Been A Slice/Facebook

A new beer is set to hit shelves in Toronto next month and it’s for more than just sipping — it’s intended to spread awareness about food waste and raise money to help tackle the problem.

It’s called Been A Slice, because it’s brewed from stale sourdough.

Second Harvest CEO Lori Nikkel said that Bob’s Your Uncle, a creative agency and supporter of the charitable organization, teamed up with brewer Common Good Beer Co. to create the ale.

The bread is provided by Prairie Boy Bakery.

LISTEN: Lori Nikkel joins the Exchange with Matt Gurney

“The reality is there’s so much surplus bread, because it’s cheap to make, that we can’t even use it at our agencies. So, how else can we repurpose all this surplus food? And beer was a natural fit,” she told The Exchange with Matt Gurney on Thursday.

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The profits from beer sales go toward Second Harvest. The organization provides food for 33,000 people each day by rescuing food destined for the landfill, and distributing it to organizations that feed those in need.

“There’s more than enough food in the world to feed everybody. There’s no need for hunger,” Nikkel said.  “So we get it from farms, manufacturers, processors, retail, distribution centres, and we’ve even just got a new platform that’s getting it directly from retail stores and restaurants.”

Canada is wasting plenty of good grub. The Commission for Environmental Cooperation found earlier this year that 396 kilograms of food waste is generated per year, per Canadian. It occurs at all stages of the process, from farm to fridge.

In addition to being a social issue, this waste is also an environmental scourge, as decomposing food is a significant source of methane gas, the report said.

Right now, Been a Slice beer is on a trial run, with 500 cases of tall cans heading to the LCBO, Beer Stores and some restaurants by the first week of November.

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The aim is to keep the brew available permanently, and a crowdfunding campaign is being launched to support the effort.

And yes, it does taste good, Nikkel said.

“It’s delicious. They made a very good beer,” she said.

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