Going Halfsies


Written by Margret Aldrich

How many times have you ordered an entrée at a restaurant only to leave a pile of food on your plate, dump the remains into a doggie bag, or stagger out the door with your pants unbuttoned? The new program Halfsies hopes to cut portion sizes for a good cause.

Halfsies identifies three food-focused problems in the United States. 1) Oversized servings. Most restaurant portions here are 2-4 times the recommended serving sizes, which contributes to our epidemic of overweight Americans. And portion size is a problem that keeps growing: 20 years ago, two slices of pizza added up to 500 calories; today, two slices weigh in at 850 calories. 2)Excessive food waste. Nearly half of the food produced in the United States is thrown in the trash. It’s commonly cited that every day we waste enough food to fill the Rose Bowl. 3)Hunger. More than 50 million Americans—and 1 billion people worldwide—are affected by food insecurity.

Combine these challenges, and “you have a dysfunctional feedback loop of waste, hunger and obesity,” says Beth Hoffman of Food + Tech Connect.

Halfsies wants to break this toxic pattern with a wonderfully simple initiative. When at a participating restaurant, choose a menu item with the Halfsies icon next to it and receive a half-portion. You’ll combat food waste as well as eat a healthier amount. You’ll also fight hunger: You pay full price for the plate, and the resulting proceeds are distributed to local nonprofit partners (60 percent), global hunger organizations (30 percent), and back into the Halfsies budget (10 percent).

Pilot programs will be launched in New York City and Austin, Texas, this spring. To learn more and help bring Halfsies to other parts of the country, view their beautifully commonsensical video here:

Halfsies: Connecting the Dots from Go Halfsies on Vimeo.

This post was originally published by the Utne Reader.


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Warning: Dining Out May Result in Extreme Eating

Santorum: We Don’t Need Food Stamps Because Obesity Rates Are So High


Photo: promotional image from Halfsies


Jim Ven
Jim Venabout a year ago

thanks for sharing.

Julianna D.
Juliana D5 years ago

I'll not pay the same price for less food, my portions aren't stupid either though,

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Quanta Kiran
Quanta Kiran6 years ago


Debbie Crowe
Debbie Crowe6 years ago

Paying full price for a meal and only getting half, does not appeal to me.
Now, if the restaurant was offering a discount off the full price to help a hunger organization and I only took half, then I may say OK.
Otherwise, I will share with my husband or take it home.

Rin S.
Rin S6 years ago

Smaller portions is fine, but they shouldn't charge us the same price!

LAV M6 years ago

Go halfsies with your co-eaters and share one dish for two people!

LM Sunshine
James Merit6 years ago

thank you.

J.L. A.
JL A6 years ago

I take the other half home for another meal.

Bee Hive
Fiona Ogilvie6 years ago

I answered the poll question: Would you pay full price for half of the amount of food? With a No. and No I would never pay full price for half the amount of food.

Laurita Walters
Laurita Walters6 years ago

Well, my leftovers go to the chickens and dog, and sometimes the goat. Kitty is too picky to eat anything that I am finished with. But I never go to fast food joints or get white-flour and processed sugar foods (unless they are hidden from my observation, and I am thereby tricked.)