Although Ripelist started as a way to eliminate food waste in our backyards, the app’s potential uses stretch far beyond this. As I think of the implications a tool like this has I honestly get goose bumps and begin daydreaming of a day when the majority of our food comes from local sources, including our own neighborhoods!
As the co-creator of the app I’ve spent a lot more time thinking about this than most so I wanted to share a few potential uses you may not have thought of. Here are five:
1. Make Fruit Pies for Later
This is good if you have an overabundance of fruit in your yard or can get local fruit cheap when it’s in season. The key is to make a bunch of pies at one time and then freeze them. The first pie is a lot of work but to make 3 or 4 or 10 at the same time, your return on investment goes way up! They will keep up to 4 months in the freezer if wrapped properly so if a neighbor has a hankering for homemade strawberry pie in September, well, they just may mistake your forethought for a miracle! –Here’s how
2. Swap Your Local Meat Share
Buying meat in bulk from a local farm like Kookoolan Farms is a great way to get the best quality meat at affordable prices. The problem for some though is that it’s just too much. If you buy a side of beef and can’t fit it all in your freezer, well, offer it for trade on Ripelist. Although you can’t legally sell meat products without the proper licensing, you can certainly trade it! Whether it’s eggs, vegetables, or other types of meat that you need, see what your neighbors have to swap for you local grass-fed steaks!
3. Swap or Sell Extra CSA Veggies
CSA’s (Community Supported Agriculture) are on the rise and they’ve become one of the most important sources of income for small local farms. They are also a great way to make buying local produce more affordable! The problem for many though is getting through that heaping box of fruit and veggies before it goes to waste. If you have extra or know there’s an item in your box you won’t use, put it on Ripelist! What you won’t use may be exactly what your neighbor needs.
4. Eggs that Pay For Themselves
Have you been thinking about raising chickens for eggs? Well, you’re not alone. Due to the limited space, and low maintenance needed to raise them, backyard chickens are becoming much more common in urban/suburban areas across the country. There are plenty of resources out there to help you get started. By raising your own chickens and selling just enough eggs to cover their cost, you’ll have free eggs and a fun new hobby! I guarantee your neighbors will be lining up to get your fresh eggs.
5. Homebrew Swap
Are you a homebrewer? Share your one-of-a-kind libations with others on Ripelist. You can’t sell alcohol without a license of course but there’s no law against trading it! Trade with other homebrewers and compare recipes or offer it in exchange for something else and save money on your grocery bill.
I hope this is food for thought and please, share any ideas you have as well. I’d love to hear them!
You can download Ripelist for free from the iPhone app store.