UN Report: One-Third Of World's Food Wasted Each Year

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Remember when your mamá told you not to waste your food because there are starving children in the world? Turns out, she was doing the right thing. 

A disheartening United Nations report reveals that a whopping 1.3 billion tons of food gets wasted each year. The total loss, which is about 1/3 of the total food produced in the world each year, amounts to economic losses of $750 billion. 

The report, which was conducted by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), attributed the waste to poor harvesting techniques and careless consumer behavior in high-income areas. 

In developed countries, most food is wasted because consumers tend to overpurchase or overreact to expiration dates. However, in developing countries, most losses occur at a production level. Regardless of the reason, the FAO warns that food production has vast environmental and social implications. 

“We simply cannot allow one-third of all food we produce to go to waste or be lost because of inappropriate practice, when 870 million people go hungry every day,” said FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva.

Da Silva said that everyone – farmers, processors, supermarkets, governments, and consumers – must make changes in order to prevent food wastage from happening in the first place. 

What tips do you have for conserving leftovers? Share in the comments. 

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About this author1

Cristina Arreola, Editorial Assistant

Originally from El Paso, Texas, Cristina earned her degree at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University before moving to BrooklynNew York. In her downtime, you can usually find her scouring the city for the most authentic Mexican food (still looking...), scaring herself silly watching horror movies, or baking her favorite sweets. You can follow her on Twitter at @c_arreola

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