DID YOU KNOW?
- Each year in the U.S., the edible food that is wasted could fill the Empire State Building 91 times.
- Throwing out just 1 pound of beef wastes the same amount of water as taking a 6-hour shower.
- Globally, the money spent on lost or wasted food could buy about 2 trillion (with 12 zeros) pounds of bananas.
- Click on the Facts and Impacts image to the right to enlarge, or here to download as a .pdf.
- WHAT is wasted is just as important as how much gets wasted.
Generally, wasting food contributes to climate change and uses up land, water and energy for no good reason.
Traditionally, wasted food has been a waste management issue which looks at the end of life problems like soil and water contamination, along with methane creation from rotting food in landfills. In the last few years, the larger issue has expanded. Meaning, that the vast majority of wasted resources and greenhouse gases come from all the steps taken before the food gets thrown away.
To find out more about the natural resource impacts of wasting food, see this United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization report.
The Corvallis Climate Action Plan has identified the reduction of wasted food as a high priority action for this community because of its negative environmental impact (pg 17). The State of Oregon, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as well as the European Union and the United Nations have all created goals for reduction of wasted food, for good reasons.
- squanders natural resources
- perpetuates hunger issues
- misuses countless amounts of labor, and
- diminishes economic resources for all
It’s up to each of us to make a difference with our own food choices.