Monday, August 27, 2012

190th Week Update - Miles Neighborhood Food Collection Project

Hi Folks,
Food Facts That’ll Definitely Make You Crazy

“For the average U.S. household of four, food waste translates into
an estimated $1,350 to $2,275 in annual losses.”

“40% of food in the United States today goes uneaten.” This means all
the food to the right of the white line in this photo is scraped into the
garbage can.
We are called a “Consumer Society” when in reality the moniker “Wasteful Society” would be more accurate with our penchant to buy everything in sight. My dad used to coax us into moderation by saying “our eyes were bigger than our stomachs” when we’d do anything to access. Even to this day I look at everything I buy through a need/want filter. But that’s not the norm for most Americans.

A recent report by the National Resources Defense Council, an international nonprofit environmental organization headquartered in New York City, took a hard look at the waste in our food chain from the “field to the fork” and it is not a pretty picture. Here’s some of the information they compiled:

· 10% of our US energy budget is used to get raw food to the table;
· 50% of our US land is tied up in food production; and
· 80% of our US freshwater in used to process food.

Then 40% of all that food ends up in a landfill as the single largest solid waste component creating nearly 25% of US methane emissions.

It’s a sobering and depressing report but the NRDC does offer a ray of hope—in the 1970s, some 40 year ago, we wasted far less food—and an array of solutions beginning with simply understanding the difference between the “use by” and “best by” stamp on most of our food packaging.

The volume of data and information in the report may be numbing but the point is quite simple. We’re out of control. To confirm this assessment, all you have to do is look in your garage. So much stuff that just takes up space. Homes are too big; SUVs and trucks are too big, even the plates in many restaurants are too big. And with so much stuff to manage and take care of, we have very little time to think … the most important thing we do as humans.

Read the short, 26-page report and get a grasp of what is literally eating up your life and your family’s life. Stuff. So much stuff.

Then consider what you need … think time mostly, and more time with the kids, more money in your savings account, a smaller more manageable homestead … and then pick one to start the ball rolling. Yes, we are a “Consumer Society” here in the US and that’s a good thing, but when your “eyes are bigger than your stomach,” now that’s a bad thing.

Invisible neighbors
Nearly 50% of all property in Tucson is rental. That means many neighbors who have a vested interest in our neighborhood aren’t accessible. However, it’s different with Jarrett Reidhead
of Tucson Integrity Realty LLC. He owns or manages three properties here in Miles and he is stepping up.

Jarrett is even participating in One Can A Week, donating food for all three properties. And at our September 19th meeting he wants to introduce himself to all of us and ask how he can help.

Well, for starters, he’s helping us a lot right now just by making himself available.

We collected a total of 186 lbs. of food. The money we donated amounted to $70.00, a $50.00 check and $20.00 in cash.

See you Sunday,


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