Home > News & Commentary > Food Law & Policy > Zero Food Waste Coalition Celebrates Senator Stabenow’s Farm Bill Proposal, Applauds Inclusion of Food Waste Provisions 

Zero Food Waste Coalition Celebrates Senator Stabenow’s Farm Bill Proposal, Applauds Inclusion of Food Waste Provisions 

Boston, MA: May 3, 2024 – Earlier this week, Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow of the Senate Agriculture Committee released a detailed section-by-section proposal for the Farm Bill. The proposal includes several bipartisan food waste provisions that will help combat food loss and waste. The Zero Food Waste Coalition (ZFWC) applauds Chairwoman Stabenow for her continued commitment to food waste reduction and looks forward to working with Congress to finalize these important provisions.    

Up to 40% of food in the U.S. goes unsold or uneaten. In 2022, this waste cost farmers, manufacturers, households, and other businesses $473 billion to grow, process, transport, and dispose of food that was never eaten. This Farm Bill presents an important opportunity to build upon successful food waste pilot programs launched in the 2018 Farm Bill and to ensure more comprehensive investment in food loss and waste reduction. 

The Senate’s proposal aligns with many of the federal priorities recommended by ZFWC for the upcoming Farm Bill. The proposal:  

  • Makes the Community Compost and Food Waste Reduction pilot program permanent, expands eligibility to states, and provides mandatory funding to the Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production that administers the program. 
  • Establishes regional coordinators for food loss and waste reduction within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). 
  • Directs the Food Loss and Waste Reduction Liaison to initiate a national food waste education and public awareness campaign and authorizes $2 million a year for five years to carry out these activities. 
  • Requires the USDA to collaborate with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration to carry out the terms of the federal interagency agreement related to reducing food loss and waste. 
  • Adds research on technologies for food loss and waste prevention and reduction as a priority area for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative. 
  • Expands the authority of the Agricultural Marketing Service to verify food and agricultural product production processes that reduce food loss and waste. 

ZFWC urges Congress to pass a bipartisan Farm Bill that strengthens investments in food waste reduction, in turn providing greater social, economic, and environmental benefits for all.  

To learn more about or join the Zero Food Waste Coalition, please email zfwcoalition@gmail.com. 

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The Zero Food Waste Coalition aims to inform and influence policy at the local, state, and federal levels, and share policy updates and opportunities with partners and stakeholders around the country to bring consumers, businesses, and government together to make food loss and waste history. The Coalition is made up of over 170 organizations and was founded by NRDC, WWF, ReFED, and FLPC in April 2023, formalizing a partnership that began in January 2020.  

CONTACT: Zero Food Waste Coalition, zfwcoalition@gmail.com 

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