By Natalie Parisi
An Introduction to the Problem
Food waste is something that affects us all. It happens anywhere food has a presence; the grocery store, restaurants, in our homes, at schools, on farms, in production and even in transportation. It affects people everywhere; those living oceans away and those that share our boarders, people living across America and throughout Utah, businesses and households alike.
Being Aware is a Personal Responsibility
So is the problem food waste itself, or that food is being thrown out when there are alternative options? Or is it that we just don’t stop to consider there is a problem? My concern is that it’s not a priority for most people. In addition, there are those than honestly don’t care. We need to start caring and be responsible individuals. My goal is to raise awareness to this issue while helping myself and others understand more regarding food waste and how to prevent it. As I’ve begun this process of self education I’ve felt that the best way to paint a picture for others is to let the numbers do the talking. Let’s take a look at some of the statistics to better understand just how much is being wasted: “Every year in America 96 billion pounds of food is thrown out. That is 263,000,000 pounds a day, 11,000,000 pounds per hour, or 3,000 pounds a second. Wasting 96 billion pounds of food costs roughly 136 billion dollars annually.” (Seifert, Dive!) A study by Worldwatch Institute, an independent research organization that tracks energy, resource and environmental issues, says that one-third of food produced worldwide for human consumption or an estimated 1.3 billion tons, is lost or wasted each year. (“Forgotten”, par. 6) The National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Disease found that US per capita food waste has progressively increased by 50 percent since 1974. They also reported that food waste now accounts for more than one quarter of the total freshwater...