The United States wastes over a quarter of the 590 billion pounds of food that is produces each year, enough to fill the 90,000 seat Rose Bowl stadium each day. This is based on fairly conservative estimates, with some sources claiming that the US wastes about half of its food supply, filling the Rose Bowl twice daily.
On a smaller scale, the average American creates around 5 pounds of trash per day. Given that 12 percent of this trash is considered edible, one half pound of food per day is wasted per citizen on average . Annually, this comes to around 197 pounds of wasted food per person. Of course this was not always the case. America’s per capita food waste has soared 50 percent since 1974.
Pinpointing the initial cause of the growing waste problem is quite challenging, but as restaurants begin serving larger portions that are oftentimes left unfinished by diners, it becomes apparent that there is a real challenge with food wasting. One larger problem may be the policy of many restaurants to dispose of uneaten items at the end of the day, oftentimes throwing out trash bags full of perfectly edible foods. These foods could be given to the homeless, and in some cases are, but legal fears oftentimes repel restaurants from doing so.
Becoming conscious about food wasting is the most integral step in combating the issue, in addition to taking action in convincing restaurants and other food-based establishments to more properly allocate their food items that are often thrown in the garbage due to an extreme demand from customers for absolute freshness.
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