In the U.S., we waste 40% of our food, costing $218 billion dollars a year. At the same time, food insecurity rates are at an all-time high, in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the USDA, 30 million adults and 12 million children may not always have access to the food they need.
In this episode, I’m talking with Urvashi Rangan, PhD, an environmental health scientist, toxicologist, and investigator, and Chief Science Advisor to the Grace Communications Foundation about the drivers of food waste in the U.S., COVID-19’s impact and lessons learned, and how solving for food waste can improve food insecurity rates. We also talk about how to reduce food waste at home, how to cook sustainably, as well as composting, upcycled foods, and more.
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2:34 What’s the difference between food waste and food loss?
4:20 What are the reasons for food waste and food loss?
10:44 Twenty-nine million adults are struggling with food insecurity. In what ways can reducing food waste decrease food insecurity?
13:04 At the beginning of the pandemic, what were the issues the U.S. faced at every level when it came to the supply chain?
21:29 Did the supply chain issues contribute to food waste?
25:37 In the beginning, high rates of meat plant workers were getting COVID-19—has this been solved?
29:08 Have our shopping habits during COVID-19 affected rates of food waste? How can we reduce food waste at home?
33:16 What does cooking sustainability mean and what are tips for families?
37:34 How can composting be really easy for people?
43:16 How can you reduce food waste with herbs and zesting?
45:53 For parents feeding babies and young children, what are some ways for them to reduce food waste?
49:45 What are upcycled foods?
51:46 Where can listeners go to get more information about these food issues?
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