And, a refreshing bonus, it saves hard-earned money – in effect giving each of us a pay raise.
This is as true for families as it is for businesses like restaurants and grocery stores… why would any of us make money only to throw some of it away?
Well, when we are truly mindful we discover we do that a lot… but the good news is that makes our food habits an easy win when looking for climate change solutions.
In developed countries (31% lost food), food waste happens mostly at the consumption end – in homes and restaurants. And in developing countries (75% lost food), that lost cash/lost food happens mostly in the upstream end of the process – in transportation and markets.
To give us a tool to make these numbers better, misleading food “sell by” or “use by” packaging labels are finally being fixed. From this piece by Georgina Gustin, which appeared in Inside Climate News: “Some of the world’s biggest food manufacturers and retailers agreed they would try to simplify these labels for consumers and whittle them down to just two. The companies, which include Walmart, Kellogg’s, Nestle, Unilever and Tesco, said they would make the changes by 2020.”
But inside the US, misleading labeling will get fixed even sooner in 2018, as the Food Manufacturing Institute and the Grocery Manufacturers Association trade groups agreed last year.
On a background note, Gustin also points out that the United Nations in 2015 set an aggressive, exciting goal of 50% reduction in food waste worldwide by 2030, in all phases of the supply chain. Here is a link to their 2017 progress report.
To me, reducing food waste – any waste, really – is a mindfulness exercise and certainly a great habit to cultivate. But if that doesn’t appeal to you, consider that it will also keep hard-earned cash in our wallets!
The great news either way we look at it, reducing food waste is a powerful global warming solution.
Inside Climate News is a nonprofit, nonpartisan Pulitzer Prize winning environmental journalism team which we support… here is a link if you would like to support their work as well.
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Not sure how to start saving the planet (civilization, really)? Start by always remembering Al Gore’s famous saying: “Hope is a renewable resource.”
Then, our practical answer becomes “Deeply know the personal Superpowers” we all bring to the game of life:
3) To save the planet, USE OUR VOICES and take advocacy seriously! Never miss a vote and never, ever stop influencing your government and all businesses locally, at the state level, and at the national level. As well, set a solid example for all around you to see. Jawbone to others about what we need to do, and influence them as peers. Finally, have an annual cash donations program. All of these are ways we can use our voices.
Stay focussed: Lead the way with substantive global warming solutions. (Far from being a bummer, this is actually a fun trend for each of us to be part of… get energized!) Our kids and their kids will be proud of us.
And in all cases and at all times, cast aside the learned-helplessness that infects so much of modern life… the time is now for climate change solutions. Never give up.
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