We were always told to eat all of our vegetables, but who knew the cost of wasting them is so staggering? “Every year 2.9 trillion pounds of food- about a third of all that the world produces- never gets consumed,” reports Elizabeth Royte in this month’s National Geographic Magazine.
You and I are responsible for 19% of the waste! Only 43 % of the food produced globally is eaten, and a whopping 19% of the trillions of pounds wasted is uneaten or discarded in homes.
Did you know that two legged carrots are left in the field to decompose uneaten? And asymetrical onions? Growers acrss the land are loosing a lot of money on the waste.The amount of fruits and vegetables wasted is enough to feed all the people currently starving. If we reduced food waste to zero we would solve world hunger. THIS IS BIG! Now that I know this, I cannot be like THE GRINCH who said, “Solve world hunger- tell no one.” I have to figure out how to do my part.
Just like everything I do for IndexCardCure, I will start with small steps. My mind get boggled with all of those numbers, so I focused on the story of Tristam Stuart who is trying to bring attention to this cause by preparing dinners from food that would have been wasted and feeding 5,000 people at a time! He is also trying to convince farmers to not throw out fruits and vegetables that do not meet supermarket standards and trying to get the supermarkets to liberalize those standards.
At home, the art of not loosing food in the back of the refrigerator is a difficult one to master. Maybe if we put home economics back into the high school curriculum for both boys and girls, kids would not only learn how to cook, but also how to tell when vegetables and fruits are ripe, so we would know how long we had to consume them before they were no longer usable.
So eat all your vegetables! And don’t throw out leftovers – eat them for lunch.
© Jane F. Collen March 22, 2016