Assembly Committee Approves Bill Requiring Supermarkets to Donate Excess Food

Legislation requiring certain supermarkets, grocery stores, and food suppliers in New Jersey to donate consumable food that would have otherwise been discarded was approved by the Assembly Health Committee.

The bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Bill Moen and Assemblywoman Shama Haider, would ensure these entities make a reasonable effort to donate excess food to various food banks, nonprofit organizations, and New Jersey residents.

“Every meal that we are able to rescue from disposal is a step in the direction of a healthier and more sustainable future,” Assemblyman Moen (D-Camden, Gloucester), said in a statement.

Under the bill, certain supermarkets, grocery stores, and food suppliers would be required to donate consumable food that they do not sell. This provision tackles the growing issue of food insecurity by providing benefits to those in need, while simultaneously promoting sustainable practices in preventing food waste.

The bill defines a supermarket or grocery store as a retail outlet operating in a closed structure with an area greater than 16,000 square feet, of which 90 percent is occupied by food or related products. It also defines a food supplier as an entity located in the state that distributes or sells food to a supermarket or grocery store.

According to the National Resource Defense Council, as much as 40 percent of food goes uneaten in the United States.

“As legislators we cannot overlook the astonishing level of food waste taking place in our country,” said Assemblywoman Haider (D-Bergen). “By requiring large food retailers to donate surplus food, we prevent waste while providing healthy meals to individuals facing food insecurity.”

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  1. because they must be throwing out tons of good foodstuff that can be helpful at the state food banks or local soup kitchens

  2. I don’t necessarily like the government involved in people’s or business’s lives but I do have to say that in this case, this is a very wise idea. There are many people in our town (and beyond) who literally struggle to put food on the table especially now that food costs have risen drastically and at the same time huge amounts of perfectly good food is being thrown away.

  3. And then when someone gets sick, the stores will be sued for not going through the food an properly separating at their own cost what can go and what is to bad. While getting roasted by politicians who vote pander to get reelected. Democratic and social programs are draining this country and the businesses that keep it going for personal gain.

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