In September, Governor Jerry Brown signed a law that allows campuses to collect unopened items and untouched fruit and donate them to food banks. Unfortunately, a lot of school food goes wasted because it is either tossed in the trash or just goes uneaten. For example, each day in the Los Angeles Unified School District, students throw out at least $100,000 worth of food. According to a 2015 study, this is almost 600 tons of organic waste daily. This is a large amount of food that is wasted and this new law isn’t the first attempt to try and reduce the amount of food wasted at campuses.
Another law allows schools to donate food that was never served to students. Many schools also have set up share tables, where students can leave unopened food and untouched fruit for their hungrier classmates to try and reduce food waste. However, the new law signed by Governor Brown allows share table leftovers to be given to food banks. Los Angeles Unified Food Service Director Joseph Vaughn states,
[The new law removes] several barriers that have made it difficult to donate food.
According to a legislative analysis of the new law, about 5.4 million California residents, including 2.3 million children, face food insecurity. It is also estimated that 14 percent of households nationwide sometimes have trouble putting food on the table. Given the increasing number of homeless people in California, this new law should help some of those people get some food.