Ethical action: Gifting well-being to others

Gifting generally involves direct contact; however, the “return” is not directly negotiated. It forms an important way of contributing to meeting the needs of other people and the environment.

One form of giving is principled discarding, which keeps items out of landfills and provides goods to others without monetary exchange.

Freecycle is a network operating in over eighty countries which allows people to share with others what they no longer need.

In the twenty-first century of overconsumption and oversupply in the increasingly unequal minority world, food banks accept “gifts” of unsold food.

Food Banks such as Harvesters (US) and Food Rescue (Australia) collect food from cafes, restaurants and supermarkets that would otherwise go to landfill and distribute it for consumption by various people in need. This form of gleaning is one of the most rapidly expanding areas of people-to-people connection.

Organisations such as Sharing gardens (US) also share their surplus produce with a food bank for charitable distribution.

Groups such as Fallen Fruit based in Los Angeles provide rules and sites for gleaning, while numerous blogs promote urban gleaning