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Are “Newfangled Devices” The Answer To The Food Waste Problem? Maybe Not

February 24, 2019: 12:00 AM EST
Nonprofit coalition ReFed says start-ups dedicated to fighting food waste attracted $125 million in venture capital and private equity funding in the first ten months of 2018. Products included smart tags that change color when milk goes bad, a mist to prolong the shelf life of fruit, and software to help grocery stores order the right amount of produce. Investors see food waste as “a big business opportunity," according to a marketing exec at Apeel Sciences, which sells a water-based solution that extends the ripeness of avocados by four days. But the products – and the trend – have their skeptics. Elizabeth Balkan, director of the Natural Resource Defense Council’s food-waste program, says, "I worry about this food-tech, food-waste boom becoming a food-waste bust."  Consumers are a major contributor to the food waste problem, so if they want to throw away less food, what they have to do is plan better and store smarter. “Newfangled devices” may not be the answer.[Image Credit: © Ben Kerckx from Pixabay]
Deena Shanker, "Big Money Joins Fight Against $1 Trillion in Wasted Food", Bloomberg , February 24, 2019, © Bloomberg LP
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