Events in progress during Food Waste Prevention Week

PORT ANGELES — Washington State University Clallam County Extension’s Waste Prevention Program will celebrate Food Waste Prevention Week 2023 this week.

The special week began Monday and continues through Sunday. It is being celebrated across the nation — and even internationally — with activities, education and resource sharing to raise awareness, the county extension service said in a press release.

During the week, the extension office is hosting a number of events.

• Classes at Franklin and Jefferson elementary schools in Port Angeles have classroom and school garden activities and lessons around composting, soil science and food waste prevention. Furthermore, one class will be taking a field trip to nearby SisterLand Farms to explore food waste and composting along with Welly’s Ice Cream.

• On Wednesday, WSU Extension Food Waste Coordinator Benji Astrachan was at the Port Angeles Food Bank with a recipe demonstration of local food blogger Vegetafull’s kitchen scraps vegetable stock.

• Each member of the public can pick up a gallon bag of free biochar garden soil amendment along with informational resources on application and benefits in home gardens and compost piles at the WSU Clallam Extension office through today. The office is in the Clallam County Courthouse at 223 E. Fourth St., Port Angeles.

• The extension service will staff an informational table at the Port Angeles Farmers Market at The Gateway at the corner of Front and Lincoln streets from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Cutting food waste can improve food security for those who are hungry, reduce emissions by diverting methane-producing rotting food into compost systems to build healthy soils and prevent greenhouse gas pollution, save money — a family of four can save an average of $1,800 per year that’s wasted when food goes uneaten, the extension service said.

In Clallam County, 14 percent of all residents — and one in four Clallam children — are food-insecure, meaning they do not know where or how they will get their next meal, the extension service said.

And yet 6 percent of the entire solid waste stream in Clallam County is edible food and another 6 percent is inedible food and scraps, the press release continued.

Across the nation, up to 35 percent of all food produce goes uneaten. Ending food waste and loss requires purposeful action at all levels of the food system — from growers and producers to retailers and restaurants to individuals at home.

To learn more about local events and the national Food Waste Prevention Week campaign, follow WSU Clallam County Extension on Facebook and visit food wastepreventionweek.com.

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