Don’t let that uneaten food end up in the trash

Siri Christopherson, Staff Writer

I recently read an article in National Geographic about how much food Americans let go to waste. Reading it, I was reminded of the reality that all too often, people buy massive amounts of food that they are never going to use and that will end up carelessly tossed in the garbage under the kitchen sink.
The fact is, if you buy a bag of spinach, you should use the whole bag. If it’s been in the fridge for three weeks and goes bad, you’re not only wasting your money, but also water and land—and polluting the environment for no reason.
According to, an educational site, it takes 100 gallons of water to grow a watermelon, 150 gallons for a loaf of bread, and 1,300 gallons to produce a ¼ pound hamburger.
Space is also used: each plant that grows takes up precious land that might have once been a forest, but instead has been clear-cut to make room for food to grow.
Pollution is also a problem–pesticides, fertilizer, and other agricultural chemicals that pollute water bodies are used to grow your food, and farming machinery uses gas and pollutes the air, so wasting food means wasting the environment.
Finally, the concept of throwing away uneaten food when other people in the world are going hungry is pretty messed up. Why should we be able to buy, cook, and pack food we won’t eat when others would love to have just a bite of it? It’s just wasteful.
And Liberty students are culprits of this waste all the time.
Think about a typical day in the cafeteria. You get up at the end of lunch to throw your garbage away, glance into the bin, and see a mess of food mixed in with the plastic and paper trash, likely not giving it much thought. But that food you see used up precious resources—land and water—in order to grow, and now it is sitting uneaten in the trash. That food was grown to feed people.
In order to cut down on food waste, Patriots should be proactive in preventing excess food in the first place by not packing more than we will eat at lunch. And when in that situation where we have extra food, it’s easy enough to take the excess home and eat it for an after-school snack, or save it for lunch the next day. Either way, it’s better than letting a perfectly good lunch—and with it, water, land, the environment’s health, and your money—go to waste.