Saturday, June 13, 2015

Food waste costs North America $162 billion

Waste Management World: Food waste in America amounts to $162 billion and between 31% to 40% of American food supply goes to waste, primarily in homes, stores and restaurants, according to a new study. The findings, from the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future (CLF) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, were published in a report in the journal PLOS ONE.

Top food wasted, by weight, include fruit and vegetables yet nearly 75% of Americans believe that they waste less food than the national average, according to the findings.

Furthermore, as a result the food waste places a huge drain on the environment when approximately 30% of the fertiliser, 35% of the fresh water and 31% of the cropland in the US was used to grow food that was eventually wasted.

The first nationally representative consumer survey focused on wasted food sheds some light on factors affecting consumers’ waste. The survey, administered to 1,010 American consumers in April 2014, covered awareness, knowledge, attitudes and behaviors related to wasted food.

Despite the large environmental impacts related to wasted food, most survey respondents listed environmental concerns last when ranking reasons to reduce food waste, with just 10% calling them “very important.” Instead, respondents said that saving money and setting a positive example for children were the top motivators for wanting to throw out less food....

Wasted food, shot by Assianir, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license

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