Half of all food wasted

This video is called Tristram Stuart: The global food waste scandal.

From Socialist Worker weekly in Britain:

Tue 15 Jan 2013

Bosses prefer to feed bins than hungry human bellies

Almost half the food produced in the world every year never makes it onto a plate, according to a new report.

That’s about two billion tonnes of food. Over half a trillion cubic metres of water is wasted every year to produce it. That’s the equivalent of pissing away the whole Mississippi River and then some.

And almost a sixth of the world’s land surface goes into farming it.

The report was carried out by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. They point to a number of causes.

For example, farmers in many developing countries don’t have the resources to get all their food to market.

The poorer the country, the worse it is—in Vietnam a whopping 80 percent of the rice crop is lost.

That’s 30 million tonnes of rice—enough to fill the massive Derwent Reservoir in the north east of England.

The report calls for more investment in these countries.

But large corporations forcing out small farmers to cater for a global food market only adds to the chaos.

And the authors save much of their ire for supermarket chains in Britain, whose competition for profit leads to obscene waste.

Whole crops are condemned for purely cosmetic reasons. So more than 45 percent of Britain’s potato crop is wasted before it even reaches the shop—enough to fill 8,000 Olympic sized swimming pools every year.

Tying discounts into buy one get one free promotions makes it harder for people to buy an appropriate amount.

That’s especially true now wage and benefit cuts have made the weekly shop a thing of dread for millions.

11 thoughts on “Half of all food wasted

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