After finding moldy cheese in our fridge, I figured it was time to clean it.  As I was cleaning, I admit to being embarrassed as to how much food was getting thrown away.  Everything from half-used bottles of salad dressing, to a cucumber we forgot about, to some old lemonade we just never got around to finish drinking.  I thought about the money wasted, and the food and drink wasted that could’ve gone to someone that needed it.

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So, just how much food do we waste here in Massachusetts?

Well, according to and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, Massachusetts wastes about 1 million tons of food per year.  Think about that. 

One.  Million.  Tons.

Now, it’s not just you and I that contribute to that waste.  This also includes restaurants, colleges, grocery stores, food manufacturers and more.  While you and I probably don’t waste as much food as large restaurants or institutions, we certainly all play our part in food waste here in Massachusetts.

And it goes beyond Massachusetts.  In the United States, about 40% of food goes wasted.  That’s just a stunning amount, and I had no idea until I read and saw the statistics on it.

The question then, is what do we do about this?  The top answers from experts seem to be:

-Plan your meals

-Keep your fridge organized

-Donate food before it goes bad

-Eat leftovers


Obviously, some of those solutions are more practical than others.  And, if both you and your significant other are working, and have kids, and have a myriad of other responsibilities, many times you won’t have time to organize the fridge for example.  Likewise, you might plan your meals, only to find life gets in the way and your plans get ruined for the week.  I get it.  That said, I look to those tips above as goals we should strive for, not necessarily goals that are realistic to meet each week.

READ ON: See the States Where People Live the Longest

Stacker used data from the 2020 County Health Rankings to rank every state's average life expectancy from lowest to highest. The 2020 County Health Rankings values were calculated using mortality counts from the 2016-2018 National Center for Health Statistics. The U.S. Census 2019 American Community Survey and America's Health Rankings Senior Report 2019 data were also used to provide demographics on the senior population of each state and the state's rank on senior health care, respectively.

Read on to learn the average life expectancy in each state.

Gallery Credit: Hannah Lang

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