Ways To Reduce And Manage Food Waste

free essayIs it a well-known fact that landfills around major cities in the world are full of garbage which has a negative impact on the environment and health of the residents of these places. Moreover, it also creates economic problems because the state spends huge resources on the creation of products that are thrown away afterward. In particular, many people are concerned about the huge amount of untreated waste food that can be found in landfills, and one can distinguish two opinions on the subject of what is the right way of recycling food waste. Some individuals think that it is necessary to transfer all the products to poor and homeless citizens while others believe that it is important to recycle waste into new energy.

On the one hand, a lot of researchers link the problem of food waste with the issues of starving homeless people who may not afford to buy their own meals. Currently, it is believed  that the state should be involved in this challenge in order to provide the homeless and the poor with access to safe food. Nonetheless, one of the studies that were published in Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior contains evidence that not all big American cities have a special kitchen where homeless people may get a free meal (Cohen et al. 45). Moreover, most of these establishments offer the homeless meals that are not healthy and nutritious. In this way, the problem of hunger and access to safe and wholesome food is really acute so it is necessary to solve it. Modern researchers have proposed a variety of ways to deal with it such as the regulation of working kitchens for the homeless and the creation of new opportunities for the distribution of food; however, these options are quite expensive for the state, so there is a need to make them cheaper.

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As for the proposal to make a new use of discarded food cheaper, a lot of experts have suggested creating legal conditions to make it possible to give food that cannot be sold in a shop anymore but can still be consumed to the needy people. The research of Schneider published in the journal Waste Management summarizes a number of scientific works which are connected with the development of the program of food donation to homeless people. Basing on this analysis, it is possible to conclude that the transfer of products by various organizations, such as cafes, shops, and restaurants, can positively affect both the lives of people in need and the economy being the ways to recycle discarded products (Schneider 755). Hereby, one of the actual proposals for the processing of food is to create a dedicated network for donations from both companies and ordinary people as it may provide benefits for the social life of homeless people and help to overcome the economic and environmental problems that are associated with the food processing.

With regard to companies that already use the processing method for products that stores may discard, one should mention Rude Food. According to the website of the organization, they co-operate with shops and producers of food to process the surplus of products in the so-called recycling kitchen and prepare dishes from them (“Rude Food”). Thereby, they give their partners a chance to sell the goods that they could discard and lose their money. At the same time, dishes made from these products have a lower price. In this way, using the company’s offer, poor people have access to nutritious and healthy food.

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On the other hand, some researchers have come into a dispute with the followers of the previous opinion because they believe that it is much more profitable for economy to produce new energy from discarded products. Cuéllar and Webber have written a fairly extensive work and counted how much energy America spends on the cultivation or preparation of certain foods. In addition, they have calculated how much energy the state is losing because of the fact that many of the products are thrown away. The data claims that “energy embedded in wasted food represents approximately 2% of annual energy consumption in the United States, which is substantial when compared to other energy conservation and production proposals” (Cuéllar and Webber 6464). Thereby, a number of researchers are looking for new ways to minimize or recover energy expenditure.

As for the potential advantages of processing spoiled food into energy, it is believed that if the system of collecting organic matter was established everywhere, people would save a lot of money as well as monitor the state of the environment. According to the article from the Scientific American, “waste-to-energy doesn’t involve drilling, fracking, or mining, and it doesn’t rely on scarce and politically-charged resources like oil” (Sheer and Moss, para.3). Thus, it is a much more advantageous method for processing food waste. Moreover, the installation of special pipes for the collection of food waste can significantly improve the ecological situation in the world because, currently, the majority of waste is sent to landfills that, in its turn, leads to major issues. For instance, according to information by Christian Oliver, South Korea has faced serious methane emissions due to food waste (para. 2). Thereby, processing of food into energy could help not only to keep the economy but also to protect people’s health.

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With reference to companies that are engaged in the process of turning food into energy, one should pay attention to the one called Turning Earth. According to the information presented on their website, the organization is working on renewable energy sources and believes that food processing into the new energy is their main way to help in a favorable redistribution of resources (“Turning Earth”, para. 1). They have a lot of partners and try to create a single platform in order to solve both economic and environmental issues relating to the processing and storing the discarded food.

To summarize, currently, there are two basic methods for recycling waste food. It is a fact that the followers of each of these ideas are rivals because they use different methods to achieve similar goals. Nevertheless, there is also a compromise that could help both stakeholders to come to an agreement and work together. This might be the right solution to give unpresentable but edible products to poor and homeless people through special kitchens. At the same time, meals that are not suitable for eating any longer may be recycled into energy in order not to be sent to landfill. In this case, both sides will be satisfied with such decision while the problem of processing food waste would also be solved with the maximum number of advantages.

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In conclusion, a lot of people in the modern world are concerned about the processing of food waste because it affects the environmental and economic situation in every country. There are various opinions with regards to the way of processing that is more efficient in terms of economy, society, and other factors. However, a compromise can be reached if the discarded food is split into products that are suitable and unsuitable for eating. In this way, the edible part of the products can be directed to the poor and needy. At the same time, the inedible mass may be recycled into new energy in order to avoid filling landfills around the cities.