Upcycling was featured as a top trend of 2021 by both Food Network Magazine and Whole Foods.
It's when food if upcycled from ingredients that would usually be thrown out and processed into marketable products. It helps with reducing food waste and has a positive impact on the environment.
The upcycled Food Association was created in 2019 by Turner Wyatt. He said upcycled food is a "way of taking otherwise wasted food, and creating something new and nutritious out of it to prevent food waste."
About 1.3 billion tons of food are wasted every year globally. The association represents more than 140 businesses across 20 countries. Some are big companies like Dole, while others are startups with product lines devoted solely to upcycled food like snacks made of salmon skins or makeup powder crafted from rice starch.
According to Turner, there's already more than 400 upcycled products on the market, but consumers don't know which ones they are.
On Earth Day, the association will unveil a new label soon to be seen on shelves nationwide. It certifies a net-positive impact on the environment, taking into account manufacturing and transportation.