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Waste by the Numbers
Waste by the Numbers

By The Numbers

"With the passing of Halloween, millions of pounds of pumpkins have turned from seasonal decorations to trash destined for landfills, adding to more than 254 million tonnes of municipal solid waste produced in the United States every year," the department writes on its website. U.S. Department of Energy.

An estimated 28.5 million tonnes of food is thrown out by Canadians in 1 year, based on these numbers.

  • 1.3 billion tonnes of food gets thrown out each year globally
  • 850,000 Canadians use food banks every month.
  • $31 billion worth of food ends up in landfills or composters each year in Canada. -CBC
  • Canada wastes 873 pounds of food per person a year -Financial Post
  • The average Canadian consumer throws out an estimated 170 kilograms of food a year
  • 396 kilograms of food per capita is wasted in Canada every year.
  • Consumers waste up to 40 per cent:"if you've got four bags of groceries you may as well just drop one in the parking lot"

    In the Global Context
  • Canada among heaviest food wasters on the planet, report says -Global News
  • How bad is Canada's food waste problem? Among the world's worst -CBC
  • All three NAFTA countries including Canada have signed a United Nations pledge to halve food waste and loss by 2030.

    "With the passing of Halloween, millions of pounds of pumpkins have turned from seasonal decorations to trash destined for landfills, adding to more than 254 million tonnes of municipal solid waste (MSW) produced in the United States every year," the department writes on its website. U.S. Department of Energy.

    United States of America/Population
    325.7 million (2017)

    Canada/Population
    36.29 million (2016)

    325.7 / 36.29 = 8.9
    254 million tonnes / 8.9 = 28.5 million tonnes
    Based on these numbers, an estimated 28.5 million tonnes of food thrown out by Canadians in 1 year.

    "But we didn't eat the vast majority of the 1.91 billion pounds of pumpkins grown in the U.S. in 2014, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Instead we, of course, carved faces into them, set them aglow and perhaps left them to sit outside for days. And then we tossed them."[2]

    About a fifth of the pumpkins we grow are processed for food products liked canned pumpkin. But given all the attention on food waste these days, it seems a shame that so many of the rest of these fresh, nutritious fruits never make it onto the table.

    As we've reported, an estimated 133 billion pounds of food is wasted in the U.S. each year. The typical American family tosses out about $1,500 of food yearly.



  • [1]
    [2]https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2015/10/30/452856477/are-we-wasting-millions-of-jack-o-lanterns-that-we-could-be-eating
    [3]https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2015/09/23/441460163/don-t-toss-that-sour-milk-10-tips-cut-food-waste-in-your-kitchen
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