Food Waste: Why Is So Much Food Wasted, part 3 (video)

In part 3, Jonathan Bloom, journalist, author of American Wasteland: How America Throws Away Nearly Half of Its Food, and Wasted Food, a blog dedicated to the subject of food waste, lists 5 practical steps for reducing individual food waste in the home, and advise for how to best dispose of food that has gone bad. The ultimate goal is to insure that the least amount of food gets thrown in the trash, and deposited in land fills. Do you have your methods for reducing food waste that work for you? Any stories about food that you have seen wasted? For those who may be interested, the fruit gleaning project mentioned in the show can be seen in its entirety here: Urban Fruit Gleaning

See also: Waste: Why Is So Much Food Wasted-2; Waste: Why Is So Much Food Wasted


  1. says

    Great to see you covering this topic. I grew up in Asia and my parents went through a war, so we were brought up NEVER to waste food. When I prep veggies for a class, I even use the ends for my salad or soups. I cannot bear to see food wasted, it’s a sin. I know people in Key West who live solely from food thrown out at a major supermarket! I am more vigilant about not buying too much, if veggies get a little wilty, I use them in soups, stews. I used to compost EVERYTHING and our garden had the best ‘feed’, grew huge and quickly.

  2. says

    First, let me say thank you for the great content. I love the interviews!

    I like to pass on an elegant solution that my friend Nance Klehm is working on.

    The food waste from a large homeless shelter in Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood is vermicomposted by the residents as part of the shelter’s educational mission. The resulting earthworm castings are used to propagate plants for use in and around the building. They do this in two large greenhouses.

    The greenhouses grow soil, food and people! Each greenhouse is 2,500’sq. The Greenhouses opened Oct. 15, 2007. Two to four program individuals work in the greenhouses. They are trained in seed and plant propagation, insect management, vermicomposting, pruning and basic horticultural skills.

    We grow soil through VERMICOMPOSTING which means ‘composting with worms’.

    There are currently approximately 500,000 – Eisenia fetida (Red Wrigglers) worms in 30 boxes. (We started with 100,000 worms.)

    They live in bedding made up from shredded newspapers gathered from the over night guests and mixed with used coffee grounds.

    The cafeteria on average turns out 500lbs of food a week. We match the cafeteria waste with what the worms can eat (approx. 300-500 lbs/week). The worm castings are used to grow ornamental plants for the building and vegetables that are used in the cafeteria.

    The Greenhouses of Hope close the loop!: Food – Waste – Soil – Food.

    Our small group of Rooftop growers helped them build Sub-Irrigated Planters a couple of weeks ago.

    A great program that should be used as a model in other institutions.

    Close the loop!

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