COLUMBIA, S.C. (WBTW) – South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control Don’t Waste Food Campaign advocates for people to limit food waste. 

In South Carolina, 550,000 people experience food insecurities. 

Richard Chesley, manager of the DHEC Office of Solid Waste Reduction and Recycling, said discarding food is not the only wasteful transaction. 

“When we waste food everything that goes into the making of the food, the processing, the transportation, all the natural resources, the energy, labor cost, all that’s waste, as well,” Chesley said.

Chesley said food costs less in the U,S. than in most other countries. 

“It didn’t bother us so much if we threw away food because we had access to it,” Chesley said.” There was lots of it. Most of us, not all of course, could afford it. So that’s how it started.”

Around 43% of food waste is generated from households, according to Chesley. 

In response, Chesley mentioned two ways citizens can reduce food waste. 

Shopping smarter and meal prepping will aid buyers to be more intentional with their purchases. 

Dispose all greens and browns into a container and place the container outside, stir the substance in the container occasionally and the the final product will become fertilizer. 

DHEC started the campaign in 2016 to address and educate people about the effects food waste has on the economy and ecosystem. 

Chesley said food waste can not be eliminated, but DHEC has adopted the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s national goal to reduce food waste by 50% by 2030. 

DHEC said that there will always be food waste, but being smarter about food consumption and distribution will help feed people who are not fortunate enough to afford food in the nation and around the world.