Food Politics + Justice

Published on June 29th, 2013 | by Heather Carr


Waste Not Want Not: A Weapon for Food Security

Waste Not Want Not Betty Bugusu

Dr. Betty Bugusu of Purdue University looks at food waste across the world and how market development and innovative food processing can improve food security. She defines food security as all people having food sufficient to meet dietary needs for an active lifestyle.

One out of seven people go hungry every day. The largest populations of hungry people are found in sub-Saharan Africa and southeast Asia. Adding to the problem, by the year 2050, there is expected to be more than 9 billion people in the world.

About one-third of food production is wasted. One trillion dollars worth of food is lost worldwide; $165 billion in the US alone. The usual answer to people not having enough food is to produce more food. Most of this food still doesn’t make it to the people who need it.

Post-harvest loss is one point in the food chain where a great deal of food waste occurs. To solve this, Betty Bugusu’s group has established “Incubation Centers” where they teach business skills and food processing skills for farmers in developing countries.

Her TEDx Talk goes into more detail about the problems and solutions she has found.

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About the Author

Heather Carr loves food, politics, and innovative ways to make the world a better place. She counts Jacques Pepin and Speed Racer among her inspirations. You can find her on Facebook or .

One Response to Waste Not Want Not: A Weapon for Food Security

  1. Kristina says:

    I often remind my kids to finish the food on their plate because not everyone has the chance to eat. There are a lot of hungry people/kids out there.

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