Smarter Business: Greening Advisor
Donating leftover food
When food waste decomposes in a landfill, it contributes to the release of methane, a greenhouse gas that is 22 times more potent than carbon dioxide. If it’s incinerated, food waste can contribute to the emission of nitrogen oxides, which can cause respiratory illness and smog, and are also a factor in global warming. Donating leftover food keeps it out of landfills and incinerators and also reduces the need for additional food production, thereby reducing the environmental impacts associated with agriculture, including water pollution and habitat destruction. Instead of throwing away unused food, consider donating it to a nearby food bank or homeless shelter. Most cities and counties have at least one location where businesses can make food donations. Consult the America’s Second Harvest Food Bank Locator to find an organization near you.