Degree Type

Creative Component

Semester of Graduation

Summer 2019


Food Science and Human Nutrition

First Major Professor

Dr. Ruth Litchfield


Master of Family and Consumer Sciences (MFCS)


Family and Consumer Sciences


It is estimated that nearly 40% of the food produced in America is wasted. Households comprise the largest contributor to this total food waste, with retail and food service coming in a close second. The goal of this study was to explore awareness about the issue of food waste in an effort to reduce food waste in the home. A social media campaign and 30-day challenge was developed. A pre- and post-survey was developed and administered to observe the attitudes and awareness of the issue of food waste. There was 1167 pre-survey responses, 17 post-survey responses, and 15 individuals participated in the 30-day challenge. There was a slight decrease in preventable food waste observed when comparing baseline to challenge weeks. Overall most participants believed the social media posts were informative and reported they learned strategies they can use to reduce food waste. Further research and education is needed to teach mindful shopping, storage, and cooking techniques to minimize food waste in the home. Due to the magnitude of the food waste issue in the U.S., there is a need for dietitians and other food and nutrition professionals to educate others, implement food waste reduction strategies in their place of work, and advocate for policy change that limits food waste from farm to landfill.

Copyright Owner

Lodes, Amy

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