Four Disturbing Facts About Food Waste You May Not Know
Every night, millions of people go to bed hungry, even though Americans throw away tons (in the millions) of food away each year. Here are four disturbing facts that explain more about the food waste epidemic we face.
Keyword(s): Food Finder and Food waste
People are becoming keening aware of food waste, more than ever before. It’s hard, especially during the holiday season not to see the food drive efforts in our grocery stores, schools, churches, and where we work. Food waste is on the minds of many, from start-ups, food banks, and even comedian John Oliver is talking about it, it’s important to see why.
Here at Food Finder, we are attempting to bridge the gap between food waste and food insecurities. We are not a food bank. Food banks have a purpose and serve millions of people each year and we are so thankful for all they do. At Food Finder, we are doing things differently to get savable food, before it becomes food waste into the hands of people in our communities. If you take the simple concept that some people have too much food, while others don’t have enough, taking the people with too much and selling or donating it to those people in their community, just around the corner helps everyone. We have the opportunity to get to the food before it’s too late. As people navigate their pantries, cupboards, and refrigerators, they see food they either will never use or foods approaching their maximum shelf life. Many of these foods are perishable like meats, dairy, fruits and veggies, which generally don’t make their way to the food banks. No one likes to throw food away, most of us cringe when we start to throw once perfectly good foods into the garbage, our hard-earned money literally going into the trash. Food Finder focuses on getting those extra food items into the hands of our Members, which include meats, breads, fruits, vegetables, and the obvious canned goods. Part of our dedication to this task comes from these staggering and sad statistics.
One-Third of The World’s Food Is Wasted Every Year
This statistic is perfect for illustrating the problem. A third of the world’s food is wasted every year.
That should shine a light on the extent of the problem, it’s huge! This means statistically when you go to the grocery store, you will throw away as much as one in every three things you buy.
As a matter of fact, an entire third of foods in the grocery stores may end up in the trash or landfill while families continue to go hungry. This is one of the things that inspires us to do our part to fight needless hunger. Hunger is a global issue.
For Fruits and Vegetables, It’s Closer to Half
While food waste is a huge problem, people aren’t generally wasteful by nature, who really enjoys throwing food away? We try to preserve the food we can: we put meat in the refrigerator or freezer, and try to buy things in reasonable quantities, and use what we have.
With vegetables, the cards are stacked against us. Supermarkets incentivize buying in large quantities, and it’s hard to preserve them. How many times have you been swayed to buy six bell peppers for $3.00? Did you use all six? Chances are you used the one you went to the store for in the first place, but likely you wasted some of the others.
The statistics on vegetable and fruit waste show that almost half of them are thrown away. In a country with a food waste and food insecurities being the problems they are, these stats are unacceptable, but fret not, with minimal efforts, you can turn your food waste into healthy, donated food items for people in your area.
The Value of Wasted Food Is $680 Billion
For some people, it’s easier to phrase the numerical value of food wasted over the amount. The economic value of our food waste is equally as shocking.
We are wasting up to $680 billion in food every year. This number is growing annually. Why with food waste awareness are we actually wasting more each year?
Our food waste equals more than the GDP of Sweden! We continue to throw food out every single year. This is one of the things that Food Finder is passionate to change.
Saving a Quarter of Our Wasted Food Could Feed Everybody
Over 869 million people go hungry every day. Hunger affects men, women, and children. Wealthy and poor countries alike suffer from this unfortunate fact. And when we throw food away, we make it even worse, yet the problem is fixable with a little effort and reprogramming of how we treat food waste. By becoming a Pantry on Food Finder and donating your food items that will go unused can make a dent in the hunger epidemic everywhere.
We don’t need to make huge reductions in food waste to feed every single person. As a matter of fact, if we saved even a quarter of our wasted food and donated it, we’d be able to feed every single food insecure person.
It doesn’t take much to fix the problem. But we all need to make our first step. Signing up to become a Pantry is free and takes only a minute. Listing your food items is easy, allowing people in your community to easily access the food items you no longer want or need.
The Connection Between Food Finder and Food Waste
Food waste happens because we buy too much food and have nothing to do with it. We can help you fight local hunger by using our website to connect people in our communities.
Food Finder can help in many ways, the first is helping people find discounted or donated excess food items within their community. The second is making it easy for people to donate their food items, reducing their personal food waste and helping people in their area. At Food Finder, we take pride in using a portion of each paid Membership to help local schools. When possible, we work with administrators, establishing “Free Food Friday’s” in schools all over. We purchase food, having it delivered to schools. Parent volunteers work with children to shop for groceries, as needed, taking food home to their families. There is no fee for the children to grab the groceries they need. Food Finder is poised to represent both sides of hunger and do our part to fight the crises.
Either way, the connection between Food Finder and food waste makes it easy for you to fight this problem. Learn about us and sign up to get started.