You can read the article, but just a few statistics that are amazing and alarming:
- It's estimated that about 25% of the food produced in this country goes to waste--in the field, in transport, in the grocery store or at home.
- A recent study shows that about 40% of this waste takes place at home.
- In another study, 93% of the respondents said that they bought food that they never use.
- If a family of four wastes 25% of the food they buy each week (at a cost of about $175), it means that they throw away over $40 worth of food each week. That comes to about $2275 per year. That's a lot of money.
- Food waste makes up an estimated 19% of landfills in this country. The food then rots, creating methane (a greenhouse gas) and hurts the environment.
How can we change our course? The article mentions a lot of good ideas. Here are some that they mention and some of my own:
- Freeze meats that you aren't going to eat in a few days.
- Don't be afraid of brown spots or blemishes on fruits and vegetables. Most of them can be easily cut off, leaving the rest fine to eat.
- Make soup--find a good basic recipe and use those carrots, onions, celery and whatever else is just past its prime. They'll give whatever flavor they have left instead of being thrown away.
- Plan your meals--buy just what you need to make those meals for the week. Don't feel like you have to fill your fridge or buy something just because it's on sale.
- Buy local. Foods that are fresher, last longer.
- At the risk of tooting my own horn, get a personal chef to make your meals. I buy just what is needed to make the meals I've planned. I use fresh ingredients immediately after I buy them. Very little wasted food = very little wasted money.