Our newsletter, to be delivered twice monthly, will explore pertinent issues related to smart technology, clean energy and sustainable agriculture. Our goal is to keep a finger on the pulse of industry trends and how they relate to Novus’s goals and success
Innovations for addressing food waste
It’s not that we want you to feel badly about the salad greens wilting in the back of your refrigerator. Still, we need to talk about food waste.
In the U.S., 1/3 of food grown for human consumption doesn’t get eaten. That amounts to about $408 billion in wasted groceries. Meanwhile, 26 million American adults are food insecure. And then there’s the environmental toll of producing, transporting and disposing of all this uneaten food. Some estimate the issue of U.S. food waste has a bigger carbon footprint than the airline industry.
Most food waste — 37% — happens in people’s homes. Common culprits include improper storage and overambitious grocery shopping habits. To that end, there are a number of small steps individuals can take to curtail the amount of waste their households provide. These include meal planning and strict adherence to shopping lists.
But on a bigger scale, the nonprofit ReFED has launched a plan aimed at helping the entire food supply chain tackle seven key action areas to slash food waste over the next 10 years. The organization says decisive action could have a net financial benefit of $73 billion annually while saving 4 trillion gallons of water, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 75 million tons and creating jobs for 51,000 people.
And the grocery store is seeing some interesting innovations. Products like Apeel, a coating applied to avocados, and StixFresh, a sticker placed on fruits like apples, pears, mangoes and oranges, can slow the rate of ripening for these and other popular produce items. And Internet of Things creates sensor systems that allow for data-driven actions in food retail sustainability.
And later this week, high school and university students in Florida will compete in a first-of-its-kind event called the Food Future Hack. This virtual hackathon challenges teams to present actionable frameworks or tech solutions for reducing food waste.
In Other News
Bitcoin bit by energy-usage report
Bitcoin ‘s long-term value took a dive after BCA Research Inc released a report revealing the tremendous amount of energy involved in mining cryptocurrency. The report concluded that data costs can exceed the value of blockchain transactions.
A rising tide for low-wage workers
Economists at University of California, Berkeley, and Brandeis University published a study showing a correlation between higher wages for Amazon employees and increased earnings for low-wage workers at local companies.
No More MPG
Aptera Motors is set to roll out the first-ever mass-produced solar-powered automobiles. Drivers will definitely draw attention to themselves in traffic, but the cars can go 150 miles after just 15 minutes at a charging station.