USDA Announced $90 Million in Support to Prevent and Reduce Food Loss and Waste
The United States wasted $408 billion worth of food in 2019 – more than a third of the total U.S. food supply. Wasted food results in unnecessary uses of energy as well as methane and CO2 emissions; reducing food waste can help the United States meet its climate commitments. On June 1, 2022, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a framework for shoring up the food supply chain and transforming the food system to be fairer, more competitive, and more resilient.
As part of this bold and multi-pronged initiative, USDA will invest $90 million to reduce food loss and waste with $30 million of this amount provided to the USDA Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production (OUAIP) to plus up their Composting and Food Waste Reduction cooperative agreements over three years. In 2022, $10.2 million will be awarded to fund pilot projects that develop and implement strategies for food waste reduction and compost plans. OUAIP is soliciting applications from local governments, school districts, and Native American tribes. Priority will be given to projects that include food waste reduction strategies, incorporate a plan to make compost easily accessible to agricultural producers, anticipate or demonstrate economic benefits, and involve multiple partners. A pre-recorded webinar on the purpose, project types, eligibility, and basic requirements for submitting applications is posted on usda.gov/urban. Applications may be submitted until September 1, 2022 via grants.gov. For additional information, view the latest USDA food loss and waste blog post and email UrbanAgriculture@usda.gov with any questions.
Save the Date for the Second USDA Food Loss and Waste Innovation Fair on September 14
On September 14, 2022 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m. EDT), USDA will host the second USDA Food Loss and Waste Innovation Fair. This free, virtual fair will highlight businesses that are creating or implementing state-of-the-art technical solutions to reduce food loss and waste throughout the food system – from farm to table – and highlight USDA activities in this space. This year’s fair will include a virtual auditorium with presentations, a networking lounge, a trivia quiz, and three exhibit halls with virtual booths. Attendees can add materials into a virtual briefcase to take with them. There are three categories of booth holders showcasing their food loss and waste activities, products, and innovations: (1) U.S. Food Loss and Waste 2030 Champions, (2) USDA agencies sharing their work on food loss and waste (in areas such as research, funding, measurement, outreach), and (3) USDA-funded organizations that are developing or marketing food loss and waste reducing technologies. More information coming soon.
EPA Seeks Input on New Programs Involving Food Waste
The EPA is seeking input on new waste prevention, reuse, and recycling grant programs and initiatives. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides EPA with $375 million to develop several new initiatives, including the Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling grant program, the Recycling Education and Outreach grant program, and a Model Recycling Toolkit. The Requests for Information (that have overlap with food waste) focus on the following initiatives:
- Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling grant program (EPA-HQ-OLEM-2022-0342)
- Recycling Education and Outreach grant program and Model Recycling Program Toolkit (EPA-HQ-OLEM-2022-0375)
Comments and information must be received on or before July 25, 2022. Read the announcement and visit the EPA website to learn more about EPA’s efforts to transform recycling and waste management under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.