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Picture this. You're at a grocery store and there are only two tomatoes left.

One of them is perfect. It's shiny and totally round. It has a perfect little green stem coming out the top. It looks like it belongs in a Caravaggio painting.

The other one is ... well ... weird. It doesn't have that perfectly round shape you love, and it doesn't look quite as shiny. Maybe it has a little crack on one side. You know it's perfectly fine to eat, but ... you buy the other one. The "perfect" one.


I'll admit those are some sexy tomatoes. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images.

We've all done it. But have you ever wondered what will happen to that "ugly" tomato you leave behind?

In all likelihood, it will be thrown out.

In the U.S. alone, around 6 billion pounds of fruits and vegetables go unharvested or unsold.

Because of strict aesthetic standards placed on food manufacturers, as well as consumer behavior in the grocery store, "ugly" fruits and vegetables barely have a chance. They're either cast aside as soon as they come out of the ground, or left behind to be discarded.

Photo by Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images.

That is why toy maker Hasbro decided to pull off a fun PR stunt for ugly foods, which involved a familiar face.

Specifically, the face of a familiar potato.

Photo via Geri Cleveland/Pixabay.

Hasbro decided to make it a little more "wonky."

That's right. Mr. Potato Head has gotten a makeover (or maybe the opposite of a makeover?) to raise awareness about food waste.

Toymaker Hasbro created this special item, which is for sale exclusively on eBay until July 3. And, as of this writing, it is sitting at 235 pounds (about $315), with over 40 bids. Proceeds from the sale of the wonky Mr. Potato Head will go to FareShare, a U.K.-based organization tackling food waste.

"We are very grateful that the proceeds from this unique Wonky Mr Potato Head auction will enable us to help those charities feed more people, and we’d encourage people to bid big," said Daniel Nicholls, FareShare's corporate development officer. "Every £1 we raise will mean we can provide enough food to make four meals for vulnerable and hungry men, women and children here in the U.K.”

Changing the face of a toy might seem like a silly thing to do, but it makes you think.

After all, he's not even that silly looking. I've seen a lot of potatoes that look just like that. I mean, you know, besides the bowler hat, eyes, and mustache.

Maybe next time you're at the grocery store, and you're faced with the choice of an "ugly" vegetable and a "perfect" one — you'll give the ugly one a chance.

Let's face it. Beauty standards are dumb and what matters is on the inside.

All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


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