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Expert Insight

Integrating Food, Energy, and Water Systems to Beneficially Utilize Food Waste

Author(s): Serpil Guran
Rutgers EcoComplex: New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station
Date: January 12, 2016 at 2:00 PM

Industry production systems underlying the Food, Energy, and Water (FEW) Nexus have traditionally treated pollution and waste as externalities that often end up in a landfill. Food waste is the single largest component of municipal solid waste reaching landfills today and is often the byproduct of many FEW Nexus inefficiencies. Inefficiencies that can be addressed through technologies such as anaerobic digesters. In the U.S., food harvesting, processing, and transportation accounts for 10 percent of our energy. However, 40 percent of food goes uneaten and Americans are not only wasting the equivalent of $165 billion each year on this organic compound,… [more]

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