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USDA pledges $25 million to reduce food waste
USAgNet - 09/22/2023

The USDA is ramping up its battle against food waste. With an additional $25 million, funded by the American Rescue Plan Act, they're partnering with the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the Office of the Chief Economist.

Over a third of all food in the US is wasted. This waste not only denies many foods security but also impacts the economy and environment. USDA NIFA, under Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young's leadership, aligns its initiatives with larger USDA goals, like climate impact and food security.

Since 2017, NIFA has poured $123.5 million into 527 projects. This new infusion of funds will expand several core programs, focusing on connecting food producers, providers, and recovery organizations.

$4.3 million will fund 12 Community Food Projects to decrease food waste, and help communities make food decisions. Projects in places like Hawaii and New York aim to build resilient food systems and improve low-income residents’ access to nutritious foods.

NIFA’s Food and Agriculture Service-Learning Program will also benefit, teaching students about food waste prevention. The House Tuscaloosa in Alabama and the New Haven Ecology Project in Connecticut are among the beneficiaries of these grants.

USDA Food Loss and Waste Liaison, Jean Buzby, views this investment as a dual victory. Reducing waste while ensuring nutritious food reaches those in need is undeniably a "win-win".

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