Sustainable America Blog

Author Archives: Nicole Rogers

4 New Restaurants Rethink Food Waste

takeout containers for restaurant leftovers

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Restaurants are a significant source of food waste, but we found four innovative eateries are proving that they can work without waste. Plus, find out how you can minimize food waste every time you dine out.

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The Drought In California

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California is the biggest U.S. producer of agricultural products. It’s also in its third year of drought, with 95% of the state in moderate to exceptional drought conditions. Food prices have already risen as a result, but there are likely even higher prices to come. Oh, and the rivers are so dry salmon are being driven to the sea in tanker trucks.

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New Efficiency Standards Ordered for Heavy-Duty Trucks

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As part of an ongoing efficiency and conservation effort, President Obama announced this week that his administration will set higher fuel-efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks by March 2016, a move that could reduce dependence on foreign oil, cut fuel costs, and lower consumer prices.

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What Is Precision Agriculture?

a helicoptor-style drone used for precision agriculture

The future of farming may include helicoptor-style drones, like this one from Precision Drone LLC, that survey crop health.

With the global demand for calories expected to grow by almost 50% over the next 40 years, the question on many minds is how to produce enough food to feed the world population. Though crop yields in the United States have grown in the last decade, they must continue to grow — and some farms are starting to use precision agriculture to do just that.

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3 New Urban Farm Projects To Watch

Photo courtesy Growing Local NOLA

The urban farming movement is going strong, with organizers worldwide working to bring food production into urban areas. Urban food production improves city dwellers’ access to fresh food, promotes food justice, and reduces transportation costs. Check out three up-and-coming urban farming projects tailor-made to suit the needs of their communities.

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Campuses Fight Food Waste

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From trayless cafeterias to thriving food recovery programs and composting, college campuses and students are tackling food waste and food insecurity nationwide. We highlight some effective programs.

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8 States to Push Zero-Emission Cars

In October, governors from eight states, representing almost a quarter of the U.S. car market, announced an agreement to put 3.3 million zero-emission vehicles on the roads of their states by 2025. Here’s a state-by-state snapshot of how these states support clean cars.

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Glad Takes on Food Waste

Leftovers in plastic containers

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The fight against food waste is getting a boost from a major consumer brand. Glad, makers of plastic wraps, containers and food bags, launched a $10 million campaign this month to educate consumers about food waste and how their products can help reduce it.

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“Ugly” Produce Can Be A Beautiful Thing

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In recent years, an international movement to embrace “ugly” produce has taken root. The idea is simple – by using the edible, but slightly less beautiful fruits and vegetables that are typically discarded, we can decrease food waste and feed more people. Some of the U.K.’s biggest supermarkets have embraced this concept. Here in the states, while some charities and food banks have been doing this kind of work for years, many American businesses are just starting to consider the problem and potential of ugly produce.

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Fresh, Local Produce, Even in Winter

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As great as it is to eat local, in most of the U.S. there are certain months of the year when it is difficult, if not impossible, to eat local food fresh from the field. Thankfully, a new crop of food hub entrepreneurs are thinking beyond the growing season by freezing fresh summer produce to sell locally in the winter.

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By the Numbers

Currently 50 million households suffer from food insecurity, meaning that family members cannot always meet their basic food needs.

10 million people a year could be fed through the recovery of just one-fifth of food waste.

Only 2% of food waste is composted or otherwise recycled—62% of paper is recycled.

Consumers throw out about 40% of the fresh and frozen fish they buy.

The U.S. produced 208 pounds of meat per person in 2009—60% more than Europe.

Low income commuters spend a much higher proportion of their wages on gas—8.6% versus 2.1% at $4 per gallon.

Food prices rose 35-40 percentage points between 2002–2008.

Americans consume 25% of the world’s produced oil, but our nation holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves.

The International Energy Agency says greenhouse gas emissions rose 3.2% last year, with a 9.3% increase in China offsetting declines in the US and EU.


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