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Food Inspiration Magazine

Good Food Gone Bad

31 October 2017    Jelle Steenbergen    food waste infographic

Tiffany McAdams has created a helpful infographic visualizing food waste.

Food waste

Ever wondered how much food gets wasted in markets, restaurants, your own home? Even if you clean your plate whenever you eat out or keep your refrigerator stores lean, much of the food waste in the United States occurs before an item reaches your market or plate.

The statistics are sobering. It’s estimated that up to ⅓ (!) of the world’s food is wasted on its journey to consumption. To put that in perspective, that’s 2.8 trillion pounds, enough to feed 3 billion people. Sickening isn’t it?

Environmental impact

Not only are 18 billion people in the United States not fed regularly, there’s an environmental impact of food waste as well. If you’ve seen fruits and vegetables become science experiments in your refrigerator, you understand the effects of decay. Fruits and vegetables in a garbage dump produce methane gas which in turn creates greenhouse gases.

Bringing the food waste problem closer to home, waste eats (pun intended) almost $1,500 of the annual budget for a family of four. That’s over $100 per month thrown in the trash can.

Taking steps

Countries recognize what a large problem this is. France and Germany are both taking measures to control food waste through laws and reform. In the United States, the Food Recovery Network, Hungry Harvest and MealConnect are taking steps to ensure unsold and “ugly” food fills bellies instead of dumps. Even the USDA has an app that helps you track your food’s “good until” date, reducing waste in your own kitchen.

Other steps you can take to minimize waste and save money:

  • Don’t take “Use By” and “Sell By” dates literally
  • Plan meals and make a list--buy only what you need to create those meals
  • Store food properly--correct packaging, location in refrigerator and right temperature
  • Eat or remake your leftovers
  • Use your food waste as compost


It may take some time to move the needle on food waste. Education and awareness, starting in your kitchen, influence more restaurants, cities, states and countries to change the status quo.

The Infographic

How Much Food Do Humans Waste?

Via: InvestmentZen.com

Thanks to Tiffany McAdams

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