Food Network Star Alex Guarnaschelli Joins GladĀ® To Tackle Food Waste In Homes Across America

In fact, most Americans (65 percent) take stock of their home inventory before visiting the grocery store, and the majority of Americans (87 percent) say they are taking steps to preserve their purchases when they return home. But, despite the reported effort, food waste is a reality and a frequent occurrence with two-thirds of Americans (67 percent) throwing away food weekly or more frequently, which most commonly includes leftovers but also typical grocery items. For instance, fruits and vegetables (38 percent), dairy products (29 percent) and bread (29 percent) are the most likely offenders to make it from the fridge to the trash bin. In fact, nearly half of Americans (44 percent) have found an item in their fridge in the past month that they didn’t realize was there. Furthermore, Americans realize that throwing away so much food has negative impacts, but many don’t understand the extent of the damage. More than half (57 percent) recognize that the majority of food waste ends up in landfills, but just 16 percent of Americans link preventing food waste with significant environmental impact. And the environmental damage runs deep: food now represents the single largest component of municipal solid waste reaching landfills where it gradually converts to methane, a greenhouse gas at least 25 times more powerful in global warming as carbon dioxide[1]. Even with this lack of awareness of the environmental impacts, Americans still feel guilty about wasting food. Many people (46 percent) feel the guiltiest related to discarding their foodstuffs given other people could have consumed it; while, nearly one third (32 percent) feel badly about the financial loss for their household when pitching food into the trash bin. The good news: realizing the possibility to reduce waste, Americans are willing to try a variety of methods. Most notably, nearly all of those surveyed (93 percent) are willing to consider storing food properly with wrap, bags or containers[2]. Helping to Provide a Solution: #SAVEITSUNDAY Glad Food Protection recognizes the role its products play in storing and protecting food and is on a mission to do its part to help consumers protect the food they buy, the day they buy it. With the right preparation and protection on shopping day, the food they love could stay fresher, longer. As Guarnaschelli can attest, one of the most important steps Americans can take in an effort to reduce food waste is prepping ingredients properly right from the start. For example, when storing brussels sprouts, it’s important not to peel or trim them prior to placing them in a bowl, covering them with Glad ClingWrap and poking a few holes in the wrap to let in a bit of air before placing in the refrigerator.

Food events in the Washington area

Pitt St., Alexandria. 703-706-0450. www.restauranteve.com . WINE TASTINGS: Current releases with Michael Honig of Honig Winery (Thursday, 6-8:30 p.m.) and Alessandro Fiore of Podere Poggio Scalette (Friday, 4-7 p.m.). Free. Oakton Wine Shop, 2952A Chain Bridge Rd., Oakton. 703-255-5425. www.oaktonwineshop.com . OCT. 18 COOKING CLASS: Marilena Leavitt leads a couples class with a Greek Taverna theme. 7-10 p.m. $150 per couple.

Is Your Food Safe?

Is your food safe? Thats a question I wish more people were asking. The truth is that the meat, dairy, and vegetables you buy at the grocery store may carry bacteria or some other food contaminant. The question is particularly relevant in the wake of West Coast chicken processor Foster Farms products sickening nearly 300 people in 17 states earlier this fall. The outbreak is the second of the year for Foster Farms. While the USDA originally threatened to shut down three of the plants cited in the outbreak, regulators backed off after the producer agreed to make safety changes. Food safety experts are paying particular attention to this outbreak because it involves an especially serious salmonella bacterium called Heidelberg, which is more likely to land victims in the hospital. Worse, several of the strains of these bacteria have been found resistant to antibiotics. Foster Farms has said that consumers should protect themselves by handling chicken safely. And, while some say that the government shutdown is what caused the Foster Farms problem to gain national attention, the truth is that the company has repeatedly run afoul of safety standards. And, its not just chicken.

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