Food Waste in America

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Photo ©2011 by Pat Pilon [CC-by-2.0]
Rebecca Richman Cohen’s short film about food waste in America raises awareness about the possible solutions to combat this problem.

It’s both interesting and worrisome that food is being thrown away due to inaccurate expiration dates. Having food that can be sold for twenty-eight days be sold for only fourteen days means the amount of food that is wasted every year can be decreased immensely if the right steps are taken.

About forty percent of food produced in the United States ends up being thrown away. There should be methods to conserve this food, such as fixing the expiration dates and donating unsold but unexpired foods to needy families.

Expiration dates for foods can be connected to other products such as make-up products and lotions. Consumer knowledge on expiration dates should include a uniform definition because stores aren’t the only places that dump gallons of milk and food down the drain.

Education and awareness on the amount of food wasted annually should be accompanies by active participation in conservation efforts. A federal law should be passed that fixes the varying state laws regarding expiration dates.

Another concern that the video brings up is that expiration dates are not based on science. If expiration dates are not based on scientific facts and figures, then how do food companies come up with them? I would like to investigate this matter because knowing this information would help me better evaluate the expiration dates on my food products and waste less food.

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