|Posted:||February 28, 2023 10:35 AM|
|From:||Representative Emily Kinkead and Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Resolution to Study Food Shelf Life Stabilization|
Nearly 40 million tons of food is thrown away in the United States every year. This breaks down to roughly 219 pounds per resident and 30 to 40 percent of the American food supply. Food waste is the largest component of landfills, making up approximately 22 percent of municipal solid waste. There are many reasons for food waste, but one of the biggest is spoilage. In fact, it is estimated that 20 to 22 percent of the total production of fruits is lost due to spoilage. Food lost due to spoilage negatively affects the economy, with approximately $161 billion worth of food wasted each year in the United States.
COVID-19 has only exacerbated this problem where the normal demand from restaurants and other food suppliers has cratered and our local farms have been most significantly impacted. Moreover, with rampant food insecurity and the need for food banks at an all-time high, efforts to increase shelf stabilization of produce are more important than ever.
As legislators, we have the ability to make a real impact on this issue. Accordingly, I will be re-introducing a resolution directing the Joint State Government Commission to conduct a study on ways to extend the shelf life of food, with an emphasis on locally grown produce. Once complete, this study can be used to craft policy within the Department of Agriculture and legislation to ensure that we are feeding Pennsylvanians and benefiting our Pennsylvania farmers. It is imperative that we figure out a way to prevent such loss from happening, and this resolution is a first step towards that end.
This resolution was introduced as HR 90 in the 2021-2022 legislative session. Co-sponsors of HR 90 included members Pashinski, Guenst, Delloso, Samuleson, Sanchez, Parker, Freeman, Schlossberg, Driscoll, Madden, Neilson, Deasy, and Ciresi.
Please join us in support of this important measure.
Introduced as HR42