WASHINGTON (NAFB) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service released a report Monday showing the U.S. wasted about 31% (133 billion pounds) of food in 2010. The loss was valued at $161.1 billion.
With 430 billion pounds of available food in 2010, the study shows 10% of the food supply (43 billion pounds) was lost at the retail level, while 21% (90 billion pounds) were lost at the consumer level. The average amount of food loss per American was 429 pounds, and of that amount, 32% (139 pounds) were lost at the retail level and 68% (290 pounds) was lost at the consumer level.
ERS says food loss is becoming an increasingly important topic domestically and internationally. The report says better estimates of the amount and value of food loss could help serve as quantitative baselines for policymakers and the food industry to set targets and develop initiatives, legislation or policies to minimize food waste, conserve resources and improve human nutrition. By reducing food loss – food prices in the U.S. and around the world would likely reduce.