Food waste in the U.S. has become a significant problem from both an economic and environmental perspective. About 40% of the food grown domestically ends up in landfills, which means we’re throwing away an estimated $218 billion worth of food each year. That’s 1.3% of America’s gross domestic product.
The cost for food companies continues climbing; according to the Food Waste Reduction Alliance (FWRA), food manufacturers generate 53 pounds of food waste per every thousand dollars of company revenue. While 43% of food waste comes from families who throw out the food and beverages they’ve bought, the larger percentage of waste comes from manufacturers, retailers and restaurants.
As the industry gains greater awareness about how much food waste is costing food companies, more initiatives are being developed to curb it. Such measures not only lower the amount of waste being generated, but also improve the financial health of food manufacturers, both individually and for the industry as a whole.