Food waste is a major global problem that is connected to many other issues our society faces: climate change, hunger and poverty, and the sustainability of our oceans and farmland. The impact of food waste has both environmental and societal implications. Food waste is also land waste, energy waste, water waste, and labor waste. When food gets thrown away, it means the resources poured into growing, producing, processing, storing, transporting, preparing, storing, and discarding the food get wasted as well. Wasted food is also food that could be feeding someone who is hungry. Tackling the issue of food waste is one of food justice, environmental justice, and social justice.
There are many sources of wasted food, such as unsold food from retail stores, plate waste (prepared food left on a plate) at restaurants, or by-products from food processing facilities. The unfortunate reality of food waste is that it occurs at every level of the industrial food system, from farms to supermarkets to individual households.