Dumpster diving, or "urban foraging" for you hipsters, has taken somewhat of an aura of eco-activism and frugality here in the United States, but it's often a matter of life and death in other countries.
Take, for instance, what the poor in the slums of the Philippines have to do to eat:
Felipa Fabon waits outside a local fried chicken restaurant in Manila. Crouching near to feral cats and rubbish bins, she isn't there to meet friends for dinner but to search through the diner's trash bags.
"I'm sorting the garbage, looking for 'pagpag'," she says. In Tagalog "pagpag" means the dust you shake off your clothing or carpet, but in Fabon's poverty- stricken world, it means chicken pulled from the trash. Pagpag is the product of a hidden food system for the urban poor that exists on the leftovers of the city's middle class.
Fabon is the merchant and pays the trash dealer just over a dollar for tonight's supply of garbage and scraps. In the dim haze of the street lights, she holds up a half-eaten chicken breast.
"This one, this is meat," she says. "Now what we do at home is clean it, put it in plastic, and then I sell it in the morning. It's very easy to sell because it's very cheap. People in my neighborhood want very cheap food."
"If it's mostly bones, it's 20 pesos ($0.05) per bag," she says.
Kyung Lah of CNN's Eye On has the report: Link