Addressing Food Waste: An Impactful Issue on Our Environment and Resources

Did you know that food waste presents a pressing issue among the US and the rest of the world? With a large impact on our environment, resources, and finances, addressing this issue by changing personal habits can make a difference. With an estimated 40% of food in the US wasted every year, this damaging problem negatively affects so many aspects of our planet. Food production requires a substantial amount of resources– approximately 70% of fresh water and 50% of the land is designated for agricultural use.

How Food Waste Impacts Our Environment and Resources

Agriculture has many negative effects on our environment including greenhouse gas emissions and pesticide run-off. With so much of our food being wasted, that, in turn, means that we are negatively affecting our environment with no purpose. The considerable amount of fresh water being wasted due to food waste is disastrous considering so many don’t have access to fresh water. When it comes to water waste, one wasted hamburger is equal to a 90-minute shower. With 1.3 billion tons of food wasted each year, that accounts for almost a third of total food production. The food waste experienced in Europe and North America is 15 times more than counties located in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

How to Lower Your Own Food Waste

Lowering the amount of food wasted starts with each family. We recommend avoiding excessive meals when dining out. Consider sharing dishes with family members, requesting to-go boxes, or asking for smaller portions in order to limit overeating as well. When it comes to grocery shopping, be mindful of what you already have as well as purchasing bulk items that have limited shelf lives. Making sure your refrigerator settings are correct can also make a world of difference in properly preserving your groceries for longer. Donating items that you won’t get to prior to expiration is also a great idea.

For more ways on how to lower your food waste, please contact us!

Dr. Mylene Buttross Professional Credentials

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