Why You Should Care About Food Waste
via Jasmin Sessler
Every year, approximately 1.3 billion tons of food produced for human consumption is wasted globally. This lost food is worth about 1 trillion US dollars and could feed two billion individuals—over double the amount of unnourished people across the globe. Creating less food waste and promoting food sustainability are crucial to reducing the amount of food-insecure individuals. There are several ways to make this happen including, redistributing unused food and practicing sustainable food habits on a personal level. Furthermore, sharing resources as well as participating in projects that encourage other individuals and businesses to create less food waste is a significant aspect of raising global awareness.
Working in the fast food industry in America, one of the most glaring elements is the amount of food wasted daily. Horrifyingly enough, many institutions largely contribute to food waste. As one study found, restaurants waste roughly 4% to 10% of purchased food while between 30% to 40% of food is thrown away by customers. This can be a result of multiple factors including the over-purchasing of food by restaurants and the distribution of large portion sizes. If restaurants redistribute food through donations or implement other programs focused on lowering food waste, it could be beneficial globally to individuals who are food insecure as well as to the environment as it is more sustainable.
via Lenka Dzurendova
Promoting and teaching sustainable practices to individuals as a means of reducing food waste is significant as well. There are various ways you can be involved in minimizing your own personal food waste. This includes tracking your waste, participating in composting, and making an effort to be mindful of how much food you purchase with the intention to use every ingredient or donate unused goods. Additionally, maximizing the use of every food item is essential and can be done so by pickling leftover veggies, using them to make veggie stock, or freezing them to preserve their usability.
Unfortunately, waste also often ends up in landfills when it could’ve actually been utilized. Many people take an abundance of food for granted but if we learn to be a little more sustainable, we can take care of each other and Earth—the place we call home.
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