Food Waste in the Supply Chain

Approximately 40% of food produced in the U.S. is wasted throughout the food system every year. The food that is wasted costs us about 350 million barrels of oil and 25 percent of our freshwater to produce. It uses 14.5 percent of our landfill and is responsible for 18 percent of U.S. methane emissions. Among the food wasted every year, 44 million tons of food valued at $63.5 billion is wasted after production and before reaching the market– enough to feed every American for three months.

This waste occurs when food deliveries on a truck, and far from their point of origin, are rejected. The transporter must quickly find a place for the food so they can move on, yet don’t know where to find a charity that is open and able to accept a large load. Food Cowboy was established to help food transporters and wholesalers identify the closest and best destination for their rejected loads.

Since 2013 Food Cowboy has bridged the communication and infrastructure gap that results in large amounts of food being wasted by connecting food companies and their logistics partners with the nearest charity able to accept their surplus or unsaleable wholesome inventory. Our education, technical support and awareness campaigns have helped communities develop their own programs and resources around food waste and food insecurity.