5 Lessons a Minimalist can learn from a Freegan.


Credit: Pexels

Freeganism has been a hot topic in Singapore lately.

Do I support such a movement? No.

Do I support extreme anti-capitalistic movements? Also No.

Do I support conscious purchasing and creating as little trash as possible? Yes.

Freeganism is the anti-thesis of capitalism, and it was also born from:

(The) “Diggers, an anarchist counter-cultural group in 1960s San Francisco. This group had a vision of a society without money, where all goods and labor were freely given. They held free concerts, gave away free food, organized free temporary housing for the homeless, and set up “free stores” that gave away secondhand goods.”

(Source: Berkeley)

What is intrusive and potentially dangerous about freeganism is that we get people who basically go not give back to society via the lack of not working and just waiting for food and other items to be discarded. Secondly, the hygiene standards would decrease dramatically if we were to only exist on food found in dumpsters and other left overs. This would progressively set us back on socioeconomic living standards. After all, I would not risk my health for “free food”. The costs outweigh paying for something that is meant to be discarded due to uneconomic returns.

However, there are 5 positive pointers we can take away from the uprising trend of such a movement in Singapore:

  1. If your trash can be someone else’s treasure, locate that person.
  2. If you can’t finish the food that you have purchased, locate someone who would want it and rethink your purchasing habits. Stop buying crap.
  3. If you want to spend as little as possible, buy things that are closer to the expiry date. However, do not mass purchase these items.
  4. Food in Singapore is usually cheaper by the bulk at the end of day. That is when shops and consumers get into a win-win situation of still making some returns while the consumer gets a cheaper price. However, think before you purchase. Freshly cooked food is usually the more logical choice.
  5. Curate your daily expenses. Dumpster diving and such activities are illegal in Singapore. Do your personal due diligence and risk management prior to dumpster diving. It does not hurt to ask friends, family and neighbours to pass something on, neither is that illegal.

One step away from Freeganism and one step closer to saving money would be participating in a No – Spend Month Challenge! Did you know that the average person who tracks their personal spending actually decreases their spending by $100 per MONTH? That’s $1200 a year.

Take a leaf from our No-Spend November Challenge.

MIS Challenge 1

Tell me how that works out for ya!


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