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Pingree, Newhouse, Co-Chairs of Bipartisan Congressional Food Recovery Caucus, Applaud Presidential Message Promoting Food Waste Reduction in April

Washington, April 2, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Representatives Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) and Dan Newhouse (R-Washington), the co-chairs of Bipartisan Congressional Food Recovery Caucus, welcomed President Trump’s announcement that his administration will focus on food waste reduction throughout April. The president’s official message states that food waste “undermines environmental stewardship and the ability of Americans to lead healthier lives” and announced the launch of “the Winning on Reducing Food Waste Initiative”— a collaborative effort by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Environmental Protection Agency, and Food and Drug Administration. 

“It’s a travesty that 40 percent of the food we produce ends up in a landfill where it produces methane. Addressing food waste is a win-win, as it can both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and also get perfectly good food in the hands of those who need it most,” said Rep. Pingree, a longtime organic farmer and environmental advocate, who represents Maine’s 1st Congressional District. “I’m encouraged that President Trump has acknowledged the environmental threat that food waste poses. As Representative Newhouse and I work across the aisle to increase awareness about this issue on Capitol Hill and identify legislative opportunities, it’s helpful to see the Administration also plans to reduce food waste across federal agencies.”

“As a farmer myself, I know how hard our farmers work to make sure Americans have safe, healthy, and, affordable food to feed their families, but that does not mean our society should be wasteful,” said Rep. Newhouse. “The President is giving this matter the attention it deserves by promoting food recovery, and I look forward to working with Congresswoman Pingree to educate the public and my colleagues on how we can address waste from farms to table.”

In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) launched the first-ever national food waste reduction goal, aiming to reduce food waste by 50 percent by the year 2030. In 2018, USDA, EPA, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also came together to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to better coordinate their work on food waste reduction. 

The bipartisan Congressional Food Recovery Caucus was founded in 2018 by Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and former Congressman David Young (R-Iowa) in order to promote food waste reduction across the food supply chain; provide educational opportunities to congressional members and staff; support efforts to reduce food waste at federal agencies; and collaborate with diverse stakeholders to highlight food waste success stories. Congressman Dan Newhouse (R-Washington) became the Republican co-chair in 2019.

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