The 3 worst food waste myths you need to stop believing right now
A staggering 40 percent of the food produced in the US is never eaten. But did you know that a lot of the food we throw away isn’t actually bad?
This Clean Out Your Fridge Day, let’s dispel the biggest food waste myths once and for all!
Myth #1: Use-by dates are a food safety indicator
View this post on Instagram
For #toptiptuesday we recommend getting to know your labels. Different products have different labels: best before dates refer to the freshness and quality of the product, whereas use by dates estimate how long you have before a product is no longer edible! #worldfoodday #loveyourleftovers #foodie #bestbefore #reducewaste #foodwaste #fruit #veggies
A post shared by Love Your Leftovers (@love_your_leftovers) on
Nope. The “use-by”, “best before”, and “sell by” labels you see on food products actually have nothing to do with when the food goes bad.
What do they mean, then?
Well, if a cookie sell-by date is 12/15, that just means that the manufacturer believes their product quality is “at its best” until that date. After that, it may not look or taste as intended.
The dates are usually arbitrary, and the food is still perfectly safe to eat well past that date.
Here are the full definitions of each of these labelling phrases.
Myth #2: “Ugly veggies are bad veggies”
View this post on Instagram
2/3: Change is hard but good. As we say a tearful goodbye to our beloved berries and stone fruits, we're also READY to welcome our fall favorites 🥔🍏🍠 What fall produce are you most excited for? PS. Next pic comes with something special – stay tuned! 💚
A post shared by Imperfect produce (@imperfectproduce) on
“Don’t judge a book by its cover,” a well-known saying goes.
Sadly, that’s precisely what we do to fruits and veggies.
It is estimated that each year around one-fifth of fruit and veg (that’s 20 billion pounds!) don’t make it to grocery stores in the US because they “don’t look right.” This “ugly produce” gets fed to animals, is used as compost – or ends up in a landfill instead.
However, just because a tomato looks a little bit like an elephant or a carrot has more legs than usual – doesn’t mean they are not perfectly nutritious and delicious!
Myth #3: We need to grow more food to end world hunger
The world population is expected to grow by an additional 2 billion to over 9.8 billion by 2050.
While many people think we need to grow a lot more food (double, even!) to feed the population – that’s not the case if we manage to dramatically reduce food waste.
According to a report published by the World Resource Institute, if we stopped wasting so much food globally, we would need to grow 22 percent less additional food to feed the population in 2050.
The Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) also claims that if around one-fourth of the food currently wasted globally could be saved, we could feed 870 million hungry people in the world.
And now – here are the 3 easy things you can do right now to end world hunger.