Posts Tagged ‘food banks’

Jan10

Five Simple Things Consumers Can Do to Prevent Food Waste

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By Graham Salinger

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), reports that an estimated one-third of the food produced worldwide for human consumption is wasted annually. In the United States, an estimated 40 percent of edible food is thrown away by retailers and households. In the United Kingdom, 8.3 million tons of food is wasted by households each year. To make the world more food secure consumers need to make better use of the food that is produced by wasting less.

Food waste remains a large factor contributing to food insecurity around the world, but consumers can help reduce the amount of food that is wasted each year. (Photo credit: Back to the Garden Inc)

Today, Nourishing the Planet presents five ways that consumers can help prevent food waste.

1. Compost: In addition to contributing to food insecurity, food waste is harmful to the environment. Rotting food that ends up in landfills releases methane, a potent greenhouse gas, that is a major contributor to global climate change and can negatively affect crop yields. Composting is a process that allows food waste to be converted into nutrient rich organic fertilizer for gardening.

Compost in Action: In Denver, the city contracts with A1 Organics, a local organic recycling business, to take people’s waste and turn it into compost for local farmers. Similarly, a new pilot program in New York City allows patrons to donate food scraps to a composting company that gives the compost to local farmers.

2. Donate to food banks: Donating food that you don’t plan to use is a great way to save food while helping to feed the needy in your community.

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Nov24

What a waste: why now is the time to address our food waste problem

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By Graham Salinger                

Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland, wants everyone to know that wasted food is a growing problem in the United States that impacts both food security and the environment. But he doesn’t want to beat people over the head with his appeal for people to stop wasting food.

In the United States more than 34 million tons of food is wasted annually. (Photo credit: Evan Sung, The New York Times)

His blog, Wasted Food, covers everything related to food waste- from the role that consumers and restaurants play – to productive ways that people can use every part of a vegetable. He even asks  his readers what their favorite food waste related songs are, his is the Black Lips’ Dumpster Dive. “In my blog I try not to be too heavy handed,” he explained in a recent interview. “I want to communicate to people that everyone has a role in reducing food waste so that I can spread the word and so that people who read the blog start changing their behavior, and hopefully their efforts start rubbing off on other people.”

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Aug04

67 Minutes to Feed South Africa

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By Matt Styslinger

Hunger is pervasive in South Africa, and thousands of domestic and international agencies and not-for-profit organizations are working—separately—to increase the country’s food security. In an effort to address this splintered approach to hunger relief in the country, the organizations Feedback Food Redistribution, Lions Food Project, Robin Good Initiative, and Johannesburg Foodbank agreed to combine their operations. As a result, FoodBank South Africa (FBSA) was born.

FBSA distributes food to 1,300 food aid agencies across South Africa that provide food to the hungry. (Photo credit: Urban Sprout)

South Africa has the largest economy in all of Africa and is an agricultural superpower, responsible for 15 percent of sub-Saharan Africa’s agricultural output. Even so, 20 percent of South Africans have insufficient access to food and nearly 30 percent are vulnerable to food insecurity. The problem is lack of access, not insufficient supplies. Every day, huge amounts of available food go to waste.

FBSA is leading a large-scale effort to establish food banks in communities with the highest concentration of food insecure people throughout South Africa. FBSA receives food from government agencies, farms, food manufacturers, food wholesalers, supermarkets, and individuals. The food bank then issues that food to 1,300 food aid agencies nationwide that provide food to the hungry. These agencies include orphanages, daycare centers, centers for the elderly, shelters, soup kitchens, and HIV/AIDS clinics.

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Dec12

In Case You Missed It: The Week in Short

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Another busy week of traveling as we left the UNFCCC COP16 in Cancun after speaking  at Agriculture and Rural Development Day 2010 and returned to the Washington DC and our home base at the Worldwatch Institute.

Jean Talon farmers market in Montreal (photo credit: Bernard Pollack)

Some quick highlights:  Our weekly innovation focused on the Unreasonable Institute in Boulder, Colorado, where the goal is to provide promising young entrepreneurs from all over the world with the skills they need to make their ventures sustainable, scalable, and replicable. In this week’s episode of NtP TV, foreign correspondent Abby Massey  reports on an innovative banking system that stores crops instead of cash. In What Works? learn about innovations that are restoring degraded land by protecting biodiversity.

A recent International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) event in Washington D.C. launched the new report titled “Food Security, Farming, and Climate Change to 2050.” We also got to see The Man Who Stopped the Desert featuring State of the World 2011 contributing author Chris Reij on conservation practices that are fighting the drought and spreading desertification in the Sahel region.

Did you celebrate Terra Madre Day on Friday? We also had several exciting news clips this week, with articles featured in the Detroit News, the Tacoma News Tribune and Spanish articles in Mexico’s Excelsior and the U.S. El Nuevo Herald.