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Food Loss and Waste

Social Media Toolkit

Help spread the word to your followers and subscribers about the federal joint agency initiative to reduce food waste.

Food Waste Animations

Food Waste Animations

Check out animated videos that can help you take action to reduce food waste.

New FDA Food Code Reduces Barriers to Food Donations

Teh FDA recently released 2022 Food Code helps reduce barriers to food donations by clarifying for the first time that food donations from retail food establishments are acceptable as long as proper food safety practices are followed.

In the United States, food waste is estimated at between 30–40 percent of the food supply. This figure, based on estimates from USDA’s Economic Research Service of 31 percent food loss at the retail and consumer levels, corresponded to approximately 133 billion pounds and $161 billion worth of food in 2010. Food is the single largest category of material placed in municipal landfills and represents wasted nourishment that could have helped feed families in need. Additionally, water, energy, and labor used to produce wasted food could have been employed for other purposes. Effectively reducing food waste will require cooperation among federal, state, tribal and local governments, faith-based institutions, environmental organizations, communities, consumers, and the entire supply chain.

Federal Interagency Collaboration

In 2018 the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) signed a joint agency formal agreement aimed at improving coordination and communication across federal agencies attempting to better educate Americans on the impacts and importance of reducing food loss and waste. The agreement was renewed on December 17, 2020.

The USDA, EPA and FDA issued its FY2019-2020 Federal Interagency Strategy in April 2019. The Interagency Strategy identified six priority areas on which the agencies will focus their efforts to reduce food loss and waste in the US.; The priority areas highlight the importance that collaboration between government agencies and the engagement of leaders in the public, private and non-profit organizations will play in solving this problem.

The full strategy, along with outcomes for each priority area, is available on EPA's website. Below are quick links to each section.

Additional Activities

On April 9, 2019, USDA, EPA, and FDA signed a formal agreement with ReFED, Inc. to collaborate on efforts to reduce food waste in the United States. The agencies and ReFED agreed to develop approaches for measuring the success of food waste strategies, advance data collection and measurement efforts, and to participate as appropriate in the Further with Food: Center for Food Loss and Waste partnership, among other activities. The agreement was renewed in September 2021 and will remain in effect for three years.


The following are resources to help you do your part to reduce food loss and waste. You play a part in reaching the national food waste reduction goal – to reduce food waste by 50% by the year 2030.

Start using these tips today to reduce food waste, save money, and protect the environment.

Food Waste Resouces from FDA

From FDA

How to Cut Food Waste and Maintain Food Safety
Learn how food waste and food safety are connected.

Tips to Reduce Food Waste
Learn to reduce food waste at the grocery store or when eating out; in the kitchen while storing and preparing; at home while cooking, serving, and enjoying food with family and friends.

Confused by Date Labels on Packaged Foods?
In a consumer update, FDA offers advice to help consumers determine if their food is still good to eat while also reducing food waste in their homes.

Food Waste Animated Videos
Check out animated videos that can help you take action to reduce food waste.

Food Loss and Waste Social Media Toolkit
Resources to help you spread the word about reducing food waste. Includes sample social media posts for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

View infographics on a variety of food loss and waste related topics in the "Reducing Food Waste" tab.

EPA Food Recovery Hierarchy

From EPA

Wasted food is a growing problem in our modern society and an untapped opportunity. In 2018 alone, over 63 million tons of food waste were generated in the commercial, institutional, and residential sectors, with only 4 percent managed via composting. EPA estimates that more food reaches landfills than any other single material in our everyday trash, constituting 24 percent of municipal solid waste. EPA works with stakeholders throughout the food system to reduce waste through partnership, leadership and action.

Learn more about Sustainable Management of Food from EPA.

Food Waste Resouces from USDA


USDA is doing its part to help make preventing food waste the first-best option for farmers, businesses, organizations, and consumers. A large number of USDA programs contribute to this objective, ranging from those supporting market and distributional efficiencies to those educating consumers about safe food storage. Selected new and ongoing activities directly contributing to the reduction of food loss and waste are listed below.

Download the FoodKeeper App – The FoodKeeper app provides guidance on safe handling, preparation, and storage of more than 650 food and beverage items.

Watch USDA Food Loss and Waste Videos – USDA has a food loss and waste playlist in YouTube with Videos in English and Spanish.

Learn about USDA's Food Waste Activities.

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