Food retailers and agriculture companies including Kellogg, Sodexo, Wegmans Food Markets and Albertsons are voicing their support or the US’ first-ever national food waste reduction goal, which calls for a 50 percent reduction by 2030.
As part of the food waste reduction effort, the federal government will lead a new partnership with charitable organizations, faith-based organizations, the private sector and local, state and tribal governments.
Food loss and waste in the US accounts for about 31 percent — or 133 billion pounds — of the overall food supply available to retailers and consumers, according to the EPA and the US Department of Agriculture, the two agencies spearheading the effort. Food loss and waste is single largest component of disposed US municipal solid waste, and accounts for a significant portion of US methane emissions. Landfills are the third largest source of methane in the US.
Following the first national standards for food waste reduction, a wide array of voices from across the food chain applauded the announcement.
Albertson’s senior vice president Jonathan Mayes said the grocery chain is “focused on source reduction as well as providing food to other good causes such as hunger relief organizations and animal feed.”
FreshDirect CEO Jason Ackerman called food waste “a significant issue facing food retailers. Our work with community partners like City Harvest to reduce food loss can be a model for others, but clearly more can be done.”
Kellogg VP Kris Charles also said the company supports the USDA and EPA effort and is “committed to doing our part to halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer level, and to reduce food losses along the production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses by 2030.”
In June Unilever, Nestlé, Anheuser-Busch InBev and hundreds of other top food and drink companies, all members of the Consumer Goods Forum, have committed to halve food waste within their operations by 2025, compared to a 2016 baseline.