40 % of US food produced is wasted – what is the impact ?

A paper produced by NRDC called “Wasted: How America Is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill”, suggests that 40 % of US food produced or $ 165 billion of value is wasted. This wasted food generates 25 % of methane emissions, but also wastes the water and energy required to cultivate and process the food. The study estimated that reducing waste just 15 % could feed 25 million citizens. How should the supply chain participants, all the way to the customer, be incented to reduce this waste ? Should manufacturers change pack sizes to reduce waste, and if so, how can this be coordinated? How should consumers be alerted to the cost associated with the wasted food and how to balance it against the convenience of disposal ?

Advertisements

About aviyer2010

Professor
This entry was posted in Operations Management, Supply Chain Issues, Sustainability and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to 40 % of US food produced is wasted – what is the impact ?

  1. Thanks to third world, US has food not only to eat but also to dump….

  2. Mangesh says:

    In the US, it is clearly a problem caused due to optimizing profits as against minimizing waste. It hits you every time you order your first meal here after coming from India. You are served food for three people. Since the number of poor and malnourished families is not a concern, nobody has really looked at that problem. In countries like India, clearly, reducing waste has much higher incentives. But there, it is a problem of infrastructure.
    Even if smaller pack sizes are made, it is cheaper to make one 5 pound bag than several 16 oz ones and people will automatically be incentivized to buy larger packs. If reducing waste is a priority, subsidies must be given to smaller packs to make them attractive helping people to buy what they need.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s