Top 5 Ways To Make Money Off Freegans

Once it’s got a name, it’s an industry. And once you’ve been featured on Oprah, you’re mainstream. So how are we going to make money off the Freegans – those dumpster diving, non-job-having, scavengers that attempt to live by the outcasts of our out of control consumer society? Together I know we’ll come up with something! Here are my top 5:

1. Dumpster Diving License Fees: Participating restaurants could band together to offer a license needed to delve through the trash for food scraps. This one requires organization, but we civilized folks are good at this.

2. Advertising: Already we’ve had a feature on the afore mentioned Oprah show, a Newsweek staffer blogging a ‘Freegan Experiment’. Those are some high profile advertising dollars. I see lots of magazine features, memoirs, and movies coming soon.

3. Seal-A-Meal: This handy gadget keeps food fresh for days, weeks, months in the fridge or freezer. It’s the perfect kitchen appliance to packaged up those almost-rotten-but-still-good-for-making-pie peaches from the trash behind Safeway. I’m sensing a new niche market.

4. How-To Books: Surely there’s a $9.95 eBook already in the works that will cater to this crowd. It’s not like you can just figure out how to scavenge on your own. People need skills. (I’d love to start a blog just to see what Adsense ads came up!)

5. Gear: If you’re going to go out at night and forage through other people’s garbage – people who may or may not employ security guards – you’re going to need a few things that you might not be able to pick up for free. I’m thinking really good flashlights and mace.

Okay, I’ve started you off. Now I dare you to share the creative ways you think our capitalist society will capitalize on the rebels in our midst!

  • Love the article Lela and thank you for the link love. :) I am sure that like everything else, there will be some ways to capitalize on these people that come up. I know that in some states dumpster diving comes with a pretty hefty fine (like $500), if you get caught.

    I just couldn’t bring myself to delve into this lifestyle, garbage is not for But here is my business idea:

    Create a city map with all of the best and unlocked(accessible) dumpsters in the city. You could include store closing hours and drive time, then sell that to the freegans for a couple bucks each. Kind of like a Hollywood map of the stars for dumpster divers.

    Or what about a freegan recipe website, show them how to make the best moldy cheese and stale bread sandwiches this side of the Mississippi. :)


  • Heather

    Why do you care if someone lives off of your waste?

  • Lela Davidson

    If they can I think that’s great. (Although I have to tell you I’m very frugal so there might not be much point digging in my personal trash.) It’s just so interesting to me that everything eventually becomes an ‘industry’ – even Freeganism.

  • NRK

    Freeganism isn’t an industry, and any freegan than allows themselves to be drawn into you ‘capitalising’ on their lifestyle is probably a stupid middle-class kid that’s trying to rebel against their mommies and daddies. Capitalism does this to everything, look at che guevara and the ‘revolutionary spirit’ of the 90’s, it warps it and distorts it so that it’s not only harmless, but profitable. It offers an easy method for the people who just want to look cool to join whatever ‘movement’ its destroying. All you are capitalising on is pathetic ‘anarchist’ middle-class kids.