Did you know that wasted food in America has doubled since the 1970's?
Nearly 40% of all food produced in this country ends up in the landfill. While that may not seem like a big deal since food will eventually break down, landfills are built in a manner that restricts the processes required for this to happen.
For example, if you throw a banana peel in your yard, a year from now, that peel will be nothing more that part of the soil you threw it on. However, if you throw that banana peel in the trash, 20 years from now, there is a good chance that at least part of that peel will still be in the landfill. Just as concerning, the part that does break down releases methane gas during that process. Methane is one of the most potent greenhouse gases there is and landfilled food waste accounts for 20% of all methane emissions in the U.S.
Aside from the environmental factors, wasting food means you're wasting money!
But all is not lost!
There are many ways you can reduce the amount of food wasted at home. There are a few tips to the right that can get you started.
And have you considered composting? It may be easier than you think. By composting household food waste, we can make a significant impact in the amount of food going to the landfill and at the same time, create a valuable soil amendment.
Starting a composting pile at home that incorporates food waste can be simple. With just a few steps you can get started!
The development of this material is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture. This material is based upon work supported under a grant by the Rural Utilities Service, United States Department of Agriculture. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Rural Utilities Service.
The Iowa Waste Reduction Center and the University of Northern Iowa are an equal opportunity provider and employer.