Wasting Food and Commercial Composting

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Truly, an eco hero in every sense of the word Now, you’ve probably all heard the big hullaballoo about the food crisis, what with food price inflation in recent months. It’s not that there isn’t enough food, it’s just that a lot of food ends up wasted (or diverted to biofuel, I know). In fact, according to a government study, the U.S. wastes a whopping 27 percent of food available for consumption!!

That’s a huge amount. Dang, just staggering. To put this number in Joe terms, it’s like if for every four apples you buy at the store, you have to throw one of them in the trash. It’s a waste o’ time, money, and natural resources. Of course, a large amount of the wasted food is not wasted by consumers, but by the food industry (mainly restaurants).

Most of that food, when thrown away, just ends up taking up space in landfills. Fortunately, good ol’ North Carolina is stepping up to the plate and leading the Southeast in “food waste source reduction and recycling, which includes composting”, according to Mary Beth Van Pelt, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency scientist based in Atlanta. N.C.’s eventual goal is to ban food waste from landfills, just like they banned yard waste from landfills in 1993.

Many restaurants are taking their own steps to reduce food waste, both by improving efficiency and by composting their old food. Watch, if you please, this video on a restaurant in Portland that’s doing its own commercial composting:

If the world (not just the U.S.) can improve how efficiently it uses its food, prices would drop, everyone would have enough to eat, and we’d be filling up landfills more slowly. So por favor, the next time you’re about to buy some food, make sure that you end up eating it (or donating it to me).If you somehow still want to read even more about food waste (and what is being done to lessen it), lo recomiendo este sitio.

Posted in food, green business on Friday, May 30th, 2008 at 10:04 AM.

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