Our Impact

Food Waste figures

Food Waste in Australia
Australians are throwing away food worth $5.2 billion a year, with the average household wasting $616 of food a year.
Australians waste close to 3 million tonnes of food per annum, or 136 kilos per person per annum
Australians discard up to 20% of the food they purchase = 1 out of every 5 bags of groceries they buy
An estimated 20 to 40% of fruit and vegetables rejected even before they reach the shops – mostly because they do not match the supermarkets' excessively strict cosmetic standards
Dumping a kilo of beef wastes the 50,000 litres of water it took to produce that meat, throwing out a kilo of white rice will waste 2,385 litres, and wasting a kilo of potatoes costs 500 litres !

Homelessness and Food Insecurity in Australia
On any given night there are 105,000 homeless people across the country. That's 1 in every 200 Australians is homeless
15 % of clients of major welfare agencies do not enjoy a decent meal at least once a day
60,000 low income working families in Australia go without meals or are food insecure
In Australia one million children go to school without breakfast or bed without dinner every day and two million people rely on food relief in Australia at some point every year
24 to 35% of school lunches end up in the bin

Landfill and Environmental Impact in Australia
3.28 million tonnes of food is driven to landfill in Australia each year
47% of municipal waste to landfill is food and green waste
Food waste in Australian landfills is the second largest source of methane
0% of rich countries' greenhouse gas emissions come from growing food that is never eaten

The rich countries have nearly twice as much food as is required by the nutritional needs of their populations
Up to half the entire food supply is wasted between the farm and the fork
All the world's nearly one billion hungry people could be lifted out of malnourishment on less than a quarter of the food that is wasted in the rich countries
The bread and other cereal products thrown away in households alone would have been enough to lift 30 million of the world's hungry people out of malnourishment

Referenced from:
-The Australian Institute 'What a waste – An Analysis of household expenditure on food' Nov 2009 D. Baker, J. Fear, R. Denniss
-Australian Bureau of Statistics, Counting the Homeless 2001 (2006)
-Mission Australia, Anglicare, Australian Council of Social Service, Social Policy Research Centre and the Brotherhood of St. Laurence, Left Out and Missing Out: Voices from the Margins (2007) and Left Out and Missing Out: Disability and Disadvantage (2007)
-VIC Health, Healthy Eating – Food Security Investment Plan 2005 – 2010 (August 2005) available at www.vichealth.vic.gov.au/~/media/ResourceCentre/PublicationsandResources/healthy%20eating/VicHealth%20Food%20Insecurity%20Investment%20paper.ashx
- Smith, B. (2005), cited in Edwards, F. and Mercer, D. (2007), "Gleaning from Gluttony: An Australian Youth Subculture Confronts the Ethics of Waste", Australian Geographer, vol. 38, no. 3: 279-96, p280
- EcoRecycle Victoria (2005), Information Sheet 2 - Waste Facts, last modified March 2005, from www.sustainability.vic.gov.au/www/html/2039-waste-and-recycling-information-sheets.asp