The absurd amount of food that goes to waste every year


Ceedrek Paselio

The amount of food wasted just outside of Taylorsville High.

Joseph Flores, Reporter

How much food do you think Americans waste annually 10-15%? America wastes an absurd amount of produce per year. They can waste up to 50% of all of its produce annually. The low prices of produce in America can cause people to buy more than needed. 

According to, roughly 37 million people struggle with hunger. Junior Sophia Cecala said, “I believe that we waste too much food every year, I think we should definitely do something about it. I mean there’s many ways we can use it.”

Students care about the food that goes to waste every year, and believe Americans can put it to use. Americans do put some of the produce to use through food banks and charitable organizations. They do this by donating cans or other produce that will not be used. Canned foods are good to donate because they have a very long shelf life. Americans can reuse food as well. As an example, bones can be used to make broth, stale bread can be heated up, lemons work as a cleaning agent, etc.

Junior Levi Garret said, “I don’t really think about how much food goes to waste. I don’t really care about how much food goes to waste, but I still try ty to eat as much as my food as I can before throwing it away.” This shows that Americans can eat all the food they purchase so none of it goes to waste. According to, an average four-person American family wastes 1,600 annually. 

Just how much food gets wasted every year? According to The Atlantic, America throws away approximately 50% of all produce per year- some 60 million tons or $160 billion worth in 2010. This is an absurd amount of food that people struggling with hunger can eat. This adds up to almost one-third of the world’s produce annually!

A major reason why Americans waste so much produce is that it’s cheaper than nearly anywhere else in the world. This causes Americans to buy more food than needed, which causes food to become expired. Americans would rather buy higher quality foods leaving the rest of the produce to go to waste. 

Why does food loss happen? One way food gets wasted is by going bad. Fresh produce usually will only last about a week. When people buy more than they need the excessive food goes bad then ends up getting thrown away. Another way people waste food is when they make their food they make to much and can’t eat it all so they end up throwing it away. Much of the food waste comes from the production level as well not just the consumer level. At production level foods can be improperly stored making ti go bad. Large produce companies also only sell their best condition produce making all the slightly bruised or blemished produce get thrown away.

Does America care about our food waste? According to, “In 2015, the USDA joined with the U.S Environmental Protection Agency to set a goal to cut our nation’s food waste by 50 percent by the year 2030. This shows that America is aware of how much produce they waste every year and are trying to reduce it.