September 29 is International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste. Earlier this month, USDA hosted a convening to raise awareness of food loss and waste mitigations across the supply chain. The second annual Food Loss and Waste Innovation Fair showcased some of the latest food loss and waste mitigation technologies, programs, and innovations from USDA agencies, universities, local governments, and businesses.
New this year, were two presentations -- one highlighting federal interagency partnerships on food loss and waste and the second on activities representing each tier of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Food Recovery Hierarchy.
Two exhibit halls were filled by U.S. Food Loss and Waste 2030 Champions, an initiative supported by the USDA and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2030 Champions are businesses and organizations that have committed to reducing food loss and waste in their own operations in the United States by 50 percent by the year 2030. Participating Champions included: Amplified Ag, Aramark, Compass Group, Unilever, JBS & Pilgrim’s, Kerry, Marley Spoon, MGM Resorts, Pete Pappas & Sons, Sprouts, Starbucks, Sysco, and Walt Disney World. Learn how to join the initiative.
USDA agencies displayed research, funding, and measurement tools to support food loss and waste reduction. Among them are Rural Development’s guide, Funding for Food Waste Reduction Projects and the Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production’s Composting and Food Waste Reduction cooperative agreements.
USDA-funded organizations featured their food loss and waste reducing innovations. University of California, Davis shared information about jelly ice -- a plastic-free, nonmelting, compostable, anti-microbial ice cube that is reusable and prevents cross-contamination.
If you missed the Innovation Fair, you can still register to visit the booths, download information, and see the presentations on demand through September 13, 2023. Sign up for the USDA food loss and waste newsletter to receive food loss and waste updates.