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Tips for reducing food waste, for consumers and businesses
REMONDIS Australia // 1 December 2020
In Australia we waste more than 30 per cent of the food we Purchase, costing the economy around $20 billion
25 per cent of water used in agriculture is used to grow food that is ultimately wasted
Education is a key catalyst in sustainability behavioural change
Roughly 67 million tonnes of waste was produced in Australia in 2016-2017, rising in recent years due to population growth.
With China’s increased restrictions on the importation and processing of paper, cardboard, plastics and metals, the waste industry is now having to innovate and improve their processes in order to handle increasing volumes of waste that now needs to be processed and re-purposed on Australian soil.
By helping educate the community on how to reduce, re-use and recycle, together we can direct our recycling efforts towards a more sustainable future. Food and garden organic waste is one of the biggest contributors to pollution in the waste industry but is also a product that is easily re-used and recycled. In 2016-17 around 6.7 million tonnes of organic waste was sent to landfill – including food waste, biosolids, green waste and timber.
As a consumer, easy ways to reduce and re-use your food waste are:
When organic waste decomposes in landfills, it produces a gas which consists of about 55% methane. Methane is a type of greenhouse gas which is much more damaging than carbon dioxide (CO2). It's also foul-smelling and highly flammable.
In Australia we waste more than 30% of the food we purchase – this costs the economy around $20 billion each year and equates to Australian consumers throwing away around 3.1 million tonnes of food each year.
This is the equivalent to throwing out 300kg per person, or one in five bags of groceries. Overall food waste costs Australian households between $2,200 to $3,800 a year and accounts for more than five per cent of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Food waste also wastes other precious resources. Twenty five per cent of water used in agriculture is used to grow food that is ultimately wasted. Therefore, throwing away one burger wastes the same amount of water as a 90-minute shower.
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