As a consumer living in America, a first world country, access to a wide variety of food that is available for me comes easier than for those who live in different countries and different areas of America. Hunger affects everyone around the world, hunger does not discriminate, but the reasons vary from each situation. In this increasingly unstable food system, food is being wasted along with the abuse in available fresh water around the world. Food waste is created when uneaten food decomposes in landfills, (uneaten food takes up about almost 25% of methane emission in the United States) which pollutes the air.Order now
The emission from methane is 21 times more powerful, and harmful than CO2 to the environment than other greenhouse gases. Methane is the primary compound in natural gas, which is the cleaning burning fossil fuel but when it is heated, in gas form it is very dangerous as when it gets trapped in the atmosphere, it also traps in heat which leads to climate change. Landfills, waste and agriculture are one of the few causes in the increase of methane released into the atmosphere. Food is advertised everywhere, in the media, on buildings and posters, and with television commercials to the point that it is everywhere. Many times it is shown with other delicacies to make it seem that there is more than meets the eye which persuades the audience to think that more is better. The more the better is the mindset that most americans have when it comes to eating but finishing all of that food is difficult for most. The holidays are starting to approach, the time of the year where many rush to the stores to buy ingredients needed for dinner on Thanksgiving.
Vegetables will be peeled, apples sliced, etc, and what happened to the scraps that are put aside in preparations for dinner? They are thrown out, along with unfinished leftovers and unwanted sides into the trash can. Food waste is a rising issue around the world, those who can afford it throw it to the side while the unfortunate beg for scraps on the street. According to the Department of Agriculture, approximately between 30-40 percent of the food supply is wasted, roughly corresponding to about 133 billion pounds and about $161 billion in 2010. With the amount of food that was discarded, families in need could have been fed.
The energy, time, money and resources that is spent on producing and discarding food. It is not always the case that one could not finish, but also how the produce appears to look on the outside. “About 20-40% of Produce is Wasted Worldwide before it even reaches the store! This is mostly due to strict cosmetic standards from large grocers that dictate exactly how their fruit and veggies should look. This equals billions upon billions of pounds of goof, healthy produce left uneaten because because it doesn’t look pretty!” (End Food Waste) Billions upon billions pounds of food is thrown away as a result of an unflattering appearance, usually because it does not look similar to how the picture advertise it as.
It is very wasteful and a an abuse of the privilege of having the necessary resources to live. With multiple reasons on why the amount of food waste is so high, there is a way to decrease that amount. Raising awareness of the levels of food waste in America and in other countries around the world is important in establishments where there are stops to eat and in especially restaurants. Raising awareness can involve putting up posters with statistics, and catch phrases that would be able to be easily remembered. Informing the people of the amount of food that is thrown to the side to be discarded that it ends up in landfills and takes up space will persuade the audience to be more conscious about their actions in regards to leaving food. For food sustainability to successful, access and availability must be a worldwide thing. Accessibility and availability is important but the quality is also imperative, sustainable food can not be made with poor quality. The way with how we consume food in the 21st century, it is done to be quick as time is money so the quicker food is processed and made, the less money for the companies producing them.
When it comes to cooking at home, a way to eliminate the chance of wasting food is to shop realistically and to properly store food so it would not rot. Meal planning, freezing food that won’t be eaten till later, and donating are also good ways to cut down on waste. Another issue that could be easily solved, is the use of water and how it is sent through the drain. Water is a valuable thing that many take advantage of, whether it be leaving the sink running when not in use, or simple throwing out left over water instead of finishing the bottle. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), ten percent of American homes use about 90 gallons of water on a daily basis while about over 1 trillion gallons of water is lost from American households in total. In April 2014, Flint, Michigan had and still have an issue with contaminated water. Flint’s tap water has been adulterer with high lead levels after the city became dependent on the Flint River to supply its water. When the switch was made, City officials failed to use a corrosion-control treatment to maintain the stability of rust layers on the inside service lines. Pure fresh water is starting to diminish and is available to those who can afford it.
As people with access to running water, it is wasted every day from staring a shower to avoid cold water, and leaving the sink going as we get distracted but other tasks. Clean water is an serious problem in third world and developing countries as diseases from unfiltered water and the lack of sanitation can kill more people than from various forms of violence. Children are very if not the most vulnerable to diseases, as their bodies do not have the immune system to fight diarrhea, dysentery and other illnesses. By being mindful of the running water when in use, we will be able to cut down on how much is wasted and discarded.