Produce lights

Global attention to food waste has illuminated a major problem with the world’s food supply: more than 40 percent of the world’s food is ending up in landfills instead of being routed to people who desperately need it. Efforts are underway to decrease food waste—from the urban dumpster diver to international campaigns and policies—and a new discovery may help supermarkets reduce their massive amounts of wasted food. The answer is as simple as changing a light bulb. Literally. LED lights may keep food fresher, cites new research.

According to a post on BusinessGreen.com, the more commonly used conventional lightbulbs that produce heat cause food to “sweat” inside packaging, and that leads to the massive food waste problem. But, switching to LED lights, which can also significantly reduce energy bills, may also help to keep food from going bad as fast as with conventional lightbulbs.

The Welsh firm Sedna LED suggested in a statement that LED lighting, which does not emit heat or any UV/IR rays, can be “placed in close vicinity to food for an enhanced aesthetic effect, but with no danger of premature food deterioration.”

Americans throw out close to 100 billion pounds of edible food each year. The USDA estimated (in 1996) that just 5 percent of what’s thrown out could feed approximately 4 million hungry people each day. Approximately one in seven Americans is currently food insecure.

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Image: christine592