Food Waste in America


Shanna-Kay Lemuel, Journalism 1

NPR did a study on the amount of food Americans waste and found that 33 million tons of food are wasted each year, the equivalent of $165 billion. ManyAi??factors contribute to the problem, but people seem to be oblivious to the amount of food that they waste. This may stem from the fact that people tend to focus on expiration dates rather than the quality of the food.

Expiration dates are more of a guideline on how fresh the food is rather than if the food is consumable or not. For example, if a bag of chips has the label “expires by 2/17/16”, it doesnai??i??t mean that the food isn’t consumable after said date. Ai??Many places do not follow this rule andAi??waste perfectly good food in the process.

Restaurants, schools, and households all waste food. Stroudsburg High School, like any other school, is no exception.

In the cafeteria, instead of putting an unopened carton of milk back in the refrigerator or an uneaten apple back in the bin, these things are thrown out. Students pile up their trays with food, knowing they may not eat it all, and end up wasting most of what they grab.

What can be done to minimize waste? Many restaurants, such as Panera Bread, donate leftover food. Not only does this help those in need, but it also solves the problem of food waste. A student should buy what’s necessary for their lunch, or smaller portions of things they won’t finish. Ai??Fixing the issue starts with one person and leads to a better, less wasteful community.