Maine congresswoman introduces Food Recovery Bill

Main Congresswoman Chellie Pingree introduced a bill to the U.S. Congress Dec. 7, 2015, aimed at reducing the amount of food that is wasted each year in the United States. The Food Recovery Act includes nearly two dozen provisions to reduce food waste across the economy.

“Forty percent of all food produced in the United States each year is wasted,” Pingree said at a press event at the Portland Food Co-Op in Portland, Maine. “The Food Recovery Act takes a comprehensive approach to reducing the amount of food that ends up in landfills and at the same time reducing the number of Americans who have a hard time putting food on the table.”

Pingree was joined by dozens of people representing groups and organizations from throughout Maine as she announced the bill. Representatives from Hannaford Supermarkets, the Good Shepherd Food Bank, Portland Food Co-Op and Agri-Cycle Energy all spoke at the press conference.

Pingree’s bill is designed to tackle wasted food in four areas—at the consumer level, in grocery stores and restaurants, in schools and other institutions and on the farm.

“Wasted food costs us over $160 billion a year in this country,” Pingree said. “That works out to about $125 a month for a family of four. We can save money and feed more Americans if we reduce the amount of food that ends up getting sent to landfills.”

Celebrity chef Tom Colicchio, co-founder of Food Policy Action and owner of Crafted Hospitality, comments, “Congresswoman Pingree is a national leader on sustainable food and farming, and I’m glad she’s taking on this huge issue of wasted food.”