Ever wonder how much food really goes to waste in the world? Statistics tell us waste has increased in the US by about 50% since 1974, and now accounts for nearly 40% of all waste produced in the U.S. 2 billion people could be fed each year with what is currently ending up in landfills. Unbelievable numbers but when I watch my own habits not so much. I recycle. I try not to over-buy. But I’m still not good at not wasting food. And landfills, where all of this wasted food winds up, produce 20% of the methane gas in the world. 25% of that comes from food waste.
But now some good news.
Over the 25 years that Food Finders has been in existence we have rescued over 100 million pounds of food. Also, of the more than 40,000 meals a day that this food represents and that Food Finders provides to our network agencies, about 65 to 70 percent is fresh fruits and vegetables, aligned with our mission of improving nutrition while also reducing hunger. None of that food wound up in a landfill. It went to people that needed it. This is why we’re so passionate about what we do. Last year we rescued and re-distributed donated food at a 3% administrative overhead amount, meaning that 97% of what Food Finders receives is put to use in the community. That is an inspiring number all by itself.
As you think about an agency you know of that helps the hungry, from a small soup kitchen to the Salvation Army, know that Food Finders may be the ones that helped put the spoon to the plate for the thousands of people in our community that need to be fed.