In case you missed it, there was big news in food waste this month.
One of the myths we often hear in foodservice related to food waste is that if you have food waste, it means that a chef or manager isn’t doing his/her job (check out our full food waste myths post here). And while reducing food waste certainly needs to be on the management agenda, solving food waste doesn’t come from a management edict or better IT, solving food waste is about shaping behaviors.
In the United States, every day we throw away enough food to fill the Rose Bowl Stadium while at the same time one in six Americans face hunger.
How can we turn these troubling statistics around? While there is no one solution, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Food Recovery Hierarchy (Figure 1) is a good place to start. Each level of the hierarchy has unique benefits, but this guide will focus on the second level from the top: feeding hungry people, or food donation.
Most Consumer Survey Respondents Say They Waste ‘Less than the Average American’
Last month the results from a unique consumer-focused food waste survey were released. The study was conducted in 2014 with research funded by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. As far as the researchers know, it’s the first nationally representative consumer-focused U.S. food waste survey of its kind.
The survey asked a series of questions including how “aware” consumers are about wasted foods, what shapes their behavior, and what motivates them. Also, of particular interest to our readers in the foodservice industry, respondents were also asked what changes they would support in the retail and restaurant industry to help prevent wasted food.
Here are a few highlights from the survey results that I found to be particularly interesting (you can read the full study here):
If you're looking for a more comprehensive overview of what the LeanPath system is and how it works, check out the video below as a first step. It covers the components, workflow, and benefits of our food efficiency management system in about two and a half minutes.