Breanne Ward is a food rescuer. She drives around Chicago in a refrigerated van saving as much food as she can. Ward works with a company called Zero Percent. It’s the brain child of Rajesh Karmani.

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"Thirty to forty percent of all food produced in the world and in the United States goes to waste. And, we want to bring that number down to zero percent," says Karmani.

After moving from Pakistan to the United States, Karmani saw a huge problem. When food businesses like restaurants have a surplus, the food is often thrown out.

"All of the items would be thrown away," says Sean Madison, of Foxtrot Deli.

Karmani came up with an app that connects restaurants to non-profit groups who feed the less fortunate.

"I created a simple app that would allow any food business to post a donation saying how much food do they have and when would they like it to be picked up, he said. "Behind the scenes this app starts texting the same non-profits in the community one by one. If they need the product they can apply yes to it. And the system automatically assigns this donation to that non-profit."

People like Breanne Ward pick up the donations. Everything is weighed and documented. In return, food businesses receive a tax deduction.

Another byproduct of this good deed -- soup kitchens receive high-quality restaurant food.

"This is the kind of food that we would normally not be able to provide our diners," said Susan Barrish, a volunteer at St. James Cathedral Meal Ministry --food like steak, quinoa, fresh fruit, roasted vegetables with tofu.

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Last year, $20 billion worth of prepared food was taken to the landfill.

"We have already served more than 1.2 million meals in Chicago," Karmani said.

Right now, Zero Percent is only in a few cities but the company hopes to expand throughout the United States.

More stories from our Open Road series can be found here.