lindsey j. North Dakota

Wasting Chicken Nuggets

"I'm so lonely. I have nobody." -Mr. Nugget

 Dear Mr. or Mrs. President,

In schools they require you to take a fruit or vegetable with your meal. As it is good to encourage healthy eating most of the fruit and vegetables end up being thrown away. This is because kids either don't like the fruit or vegetable or they get full. This doesn’t only happen in school either. 70 billion pounds or food are wasted in the United States every year. Most of the time families pick what they think there want at the grocery store and it ends up being pushed to the back of their fridge until it gets thrown away. It’s not that Americans want to waste food, but we tend to buy more then we need, especially when it comes to food.

The Feeding America network estimated that 25 to 40 percent of grown, processed, and transported food will never be consumed. Millions of dollars are being wasted daily and it’s not just from production. Getting food to the consumers tables uses an estimated 10 percent of the total U.S. energy budget and 80 percent of freshwater in the United States. Plus the cost of labor and transportation.

When Americans throw away the uneaten food they don’t think much about it. When food is disposed in a landfill it ends up rotting and becomes a source of methane. Which is a potent greenhouse gas with 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide.The average family of four spends $1,365 to $2,275 in wasted food annually. Most Americans are unaware of this, because of low prices on some food. Low price is good, but also causes consumers to buy in bulks. The end result is wasted food.

A company is using wasted food in the landfills to make energy. In order to decrease wasted food and mitigate climate change, East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) are using a new method of reducing the amount of food waste reaching landfills while simultaneously producing renewable energy. If 50% of wasted food gets generated each year, it would be enough electricity to power over 2.5 million homes for one year.

Even with East Bay Municipal Utility District’s idea, there is still too much food being wasted. Food that could be given to someone who really needs it. So please Mr or Mrs. President, find a way to stop or at least slow down the amount of food being wasted.