Preventing Food Waste

— Written By and last updated by

Food–whether you are growing, harvesting, preparing, serving, or consuming it—always creates waste, so you should plan ahead for dealing with it. Many people are surprised that the largest category of waste being thrown away in the U.S. is food residuals—over 21 percent of the total! Discarding food residuals in the trash or down sink drains causes problems downstream. Instead of throwing food waste away, you can take steps to prevent food waste.

  • Determine the amounts and types of food waste and why they are being generated
  • Buy and prepare less of those foods the next time
  • Redesign menu cycles for secondary use of food (leftovers)
  • Use food parts as raw materials to create other products
  • Improve inventory control to reduce excess and out-of-date inventory
  • Offer smaller portions for those who want to eat less
  • Order supplies in bulk
  • Ensure proper storage techniques
  • Go trayless at cafeterias and dining halls

Read more