General Question

Elfman's avatar

How much food do grocery stores throw out each day?

Asked by Elfman (449 points ) November 15th, 2007

What gets tossed and what stays on shelves?

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3 Answers

syz's avatar

Tons. Literally. I was Curator of a conservation organization that had over three hundred animals, many of which ate fruit. I made arrangements with many local (major chain) grocery stores to pick up the fruit that was “old” or “damaged” that they would otherwise be throwing away. I used a Ford Econline van and I would easily fill it up three times a week with hundreds of pounds of food from each store that I considered perfectly “eatable”. I often made an extra trip and dropped items off at the food bank that my animals wouldn’t eat. And that was merely the last stop in a long chain of growing, picking, processing and shipping stages that also involve massive waste.

occ's avatar

I read a great article on AlterNet called “One Man’s Dumpster is Another’s Diner” all about “Freegans” who subsist almost entirely on food thrown away by supermarkets. They’re not even really going through dumpsters—they just go and get all the free food that is one day past expiration date, most of it packaged. Many Freegans live this way out of principle more than necessity…i.e. they could afford to buy new food but they don’t believe in letting all the old food go to waste. You can read the whole article here if you are interested in learning more about the kinds of food that get thrown away, etc. I found it pretty interesting.
http://www.alternet.org/story/49547

Glow's avatar

Being some one who used to work at Publix Grocery Stores, I can say, they literally have BINS full of stuff that goes.

Its kinda sad :/ Im always tempted to take some >_>

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