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Articles by Dana Gunders

Dana is a food and agriculture-focused project scientist for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), based in San Francisco. She blogs regularly about food waste here.

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Less than a year ago, concern over wasted food was almost imperceptible amidst U.S. government agencies. Tuesday, however, the United States joined the ranks of countries around the world who are taking food waste seriously. Kudos to USDA and EPA for their speedy turnaround, as evidenced by their announcement of the U.S. Food Waste Challenge. The devil is in the details, of course, but I’m cautiously optimistic that this is a great step toward a more economically, socially, and environmentally streamlined food system.

With the announcement, USDA has committed to several actions to reduce, recover, and recycle wasted food across the country and has invited industry and individuals to do the same. The challenge includes a goal to have 400 partner organizations by 2015 and 1,000 by 2020. This is a start, but a goal of having a particular number of partner organizations does not in itself make for change. The proof of whether this challenge actually makes progress on reducing food waste will be to get truly meaningful commitments and to ensure those commitments translate to action.

The good news is they are... Read more

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