Was listening to Radio 4 this morning and there was an article on


Freegans are people who employ alternative strategies for living based on limited participation in the conventional economy and minimal consumption of resources. Freegans embrace community, generosity, social concern, freedom, cooperation, and sharing in opposition to a society based on materialism, moral apathy, competition, conformity, and greed.

After years of trying to boycott products from egregious corporations responsible for human rights violations, environmental destruction, and animal abuse, many of us found that no matter what we bought we ended up supporting something deplorable. We came to realize that the problem isn't just a few bad corporations but the entire system itself.

Freeganism is a total boycott of an economic system where the profit motive has eclipsed ethical considerations and where massively complex systems of productions ensure that all the products we buy will have detrimental impacts most of which we may never even consider. Thus, instead of avoiding the purchase of products from one bad company only to support another, we avoid buying anything to the greatest degree we are able.

The word freegan is compounded from "free" and "vegan". Vegans are people who avoid products from animal sources or products tested on animals in an effort to avoid harming animals. Freegans take this a step further by recognizing that in a complex, industrial, mass-production economy driven by profit, abuses of humans, animals, and the earth abound at all levels of production (from acquisition to raw materials to production to transportation) and in just about every product we buy. Sweatshop labor, rainforest destruction, global warming, displacement of indigenous communities, air and water pollution, eradication of wildlife on farmland as "pests", the violent overthrow of popularly elected governments to maintain puppet dictators compliant to big business interests, open-pit strip mining, oil drilling in environmentally sensitive areas, union busting, child slavery, and payoffs to repressive regimes are just some of the many impacts of the seemingly innocuous consumer products we consume every day.

Freegans employ a range of strategies for practical living based on our principles:


There is no excuse for hunger in the Uk is there?
I can see the merit in every word of that. But. It takes total dedication and sacrifice to go down that route. I have a lot of respect and admiration for the people involved. I just don't have the will or audacity to put my wife and kids through scraping through supermarket bins and living in a tent.

Capitalism is a desperate Darwinian solution built upon dirty deeds, pay offs, criminality and the serving of wealthy elites at the expense of those less capable and less fortunate. The status quo is that the disabled, poor, and those suffering ill health are only worthy of isolation, exploitation and ultimate disposal.
I don't know, there's a few tramps in my town who seem to be champions of the freegan idea. Picking up empty bottles for the deposit, raiding bins for half eaten pizzas, not spending money on soap, or new clothes.

It sounds like an exciting lifestyle, I may consider it after I retire.
Tartan_Terrier said:
I don't know, there's a few tramps in my town who seem to be champions of the freegan idea. Picking up empty bottles for the deposit, raiding bins for half eaten pizzas, not spending money on soap, or new clothes.

It sounds like an exciting lifestyle, I may consider it after I retire.
Mmmmmm sounds a lucrative way of life!!
I heard the Radio 4 interview this morning which gave a brief introduction to their lifestyle and beliefs, taken from their website. The BBC then wheeled in an expert who stated that food approaching it's sell-by date was donated to charity while those who foraged upon it risked their health since they were neither food scientists nor toxicologists!

No real discussion about the ethics or morality of the life they have chosen, or any critical analysis of what it is they reject. Instead, we heard a self-congratulatory and smug justification on the part of the food industry in the assertion that food waste was not in fact wasted coupled with a subtle denigratory assessment of their lifestyle.

Alternative lifestyles tend to be denigrated and demonised and, if they attract too large a following, legislated against!

This happened, for example, in the early 1990s when the then Tory Government demonised 'New Age Travellers' by enacting the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 which created the criminal offence of 'aggravated trespass' and gave the police the power to confiscate and destroy their vehicles, which also happened to be their homes! At the same time, Act repealed the Reverter of Sites Act 1984 which had obliged Local Authorities to provide suitable sites for them to live on!

It this group attracts any sort of following then you can expect more of the same!

Those who opt out of society are not tolerated, since you can neither control them, indoctrinate them or tax them! You can rely on Murdoch press to generate enough public opinion in support of whatever discriminatory legislation you have in mind!

Such groups are easy to destroy since they do not represent a lost vote, they are not organised, have no pressure group representing their interests or lobbying for them, have no strong roots with the established community and are therefore easy to 'pick off'.

Worked a treat with New Age Travellers! and it is working well with the manufactured hostility to other non-conformist groups such as so-called 'Hoodies' and 'chavs'
I didn't hear the program, but are you sure this isn't a windup? Reading the website it sounded a little tongue in cheek.

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