Researching Food Waste in America With Dana Gunders

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We vastly underutilize our freezers. They’re the magic pause button when it comes to preventing food waste.

dana gunders

Dana Gunders is quite literally “the woman who helped start the zero-waste movement,” according to Consumer Reports. In this fact-filled conversation, learn how what started out as a report on plastics in farming led her to learn that 40% of our food supply was going to waste.

Dana is a true expert on food waste who knows the data like the back of her hand. In this candid chat she shares the honest and sometimes shocking truth behind why 75% of Americans believe they waste less food than the average American, why restaurant portion sizes are such a problem, and how on earth farms end up wasting food when their livelihood depends on selling as much of what they grow as they can.

She also shares some insight on why expiration dates are so misunderstood and why old food isn’t actually what ends up makes us sick. Our chat with Dana is also packed with practical waste-fighting tips like how the surprising benefits of a meal plan that includes a few lazy nights, the waste-fighting benefit of “stir-Fridays,” and how your freezer is the magic pause button for perishable food.

If you’re looking to learn more about the zero-waste movement, this episode will leave you informed and inspired to take action!



Links to things we talked about

  1. Learn more about the zero-waste movement on Dana’s website 
  2. Dana’s Instagram
  3. Dana’s groundbreaking report on food waste in America 
  4. 75% of Americans believe that they waste less food than the average American
  5. The UN study that found that 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions come from food waste, or the equivalent of 37 million cars
  6. The Santa Clara study on farm-level food waste that Dana mentioned 
  7. Dana’s waste-free kitchen handbook
  8. Imperfect’s use spinach first post 
  9. Dana’s go-to karaoke song is “I like to move it” 
  10. Dana’s feeling inspired by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg lately. If you haven’t seen Greta’s speech about climate change to the United Nations, it’s a must-watch

If you liked this, then tune in to Exploring the American Wasteland with Jonathan Bloom.