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Nurturing Gratitude: A Thoughtful Approach to Thanksgiving Food Consumption

As the season of Thanksgiving approaches, our minds often conjure images of a bountiful table surrounded by loved ones. However, it is disheartening to acknowledge that this cherished holiday also marks a day when Americans discard more food than any other, while a staggering 44 million people, equivalent to twice the population of New York, grapple with hunger.

The Unsettling Reality: Beyond the festive atmosphere, the repercussions of Thanksgiving excess extend beyond wasted food. Food waste squanders financial resources and it depletes precious environmental resources, worsening the global challenge of climate change. Shockingly, 40% of all food grown is wasted, while one in five children in the US faces uncertainty about their next meal.

The Alarming Projections: This year, projections suggest that Americans will surpass previous records in food waste, amounting to an estimated 312 million pounds. To put this into perspective, this staggering figure could supply sustenance for 38.3 million food-insecure individuals seven times over.

Practical Steps Towards Change: To counteract this trend, let us consider practical steps to minimize food waste not only during Thanksgiving but on any given day.

  • Know how much to buy: Take a proactive stance by understanding the appropriate quantities to purchase. Utilize resources like the Save The Food Guest-mator to calculate the optimal amount needed to cater to your guests, striking a balance between abundance and prudence.

  • Prepare for leftovers: Embrace the concept of mindful leftovers by having storage containers and aluminum foil readily available. Alternatively, encourage guests to bring their containers, fostering a communal effort to minimize excess food.

  • Freeze for later: Extend the lifespan of Thanksgiving leftovers by freezing them for future enjoyment. Properly preserved, these meals can evoke nostalgia or satisfy cravings later, minimizing both waste and unnecessary expenses.

  • Turn leftovers into a new meal: Transforming Thanksgiving leftovers into a new culinary creation can become a cherished tradition. Boil the turkey carcass to extract flavorful broth and tender meat, creating a foundation for a delightful Turkey and Dumpling dinner—a simple yet delectable new tradition that eliminates food waste and an easy meal to prepare on a busy evening.

As we approach this season of gratitude, let us be mindful of our concumption, recognizing the power each individual holds to make a positive impact. By adopting these simple yet impactful practices, we can transform Thanksgiving into a celebration that not only fills our tables but also nourishes the well-being of our planet and its inhabitants.

These simple, actionable, and impactful steps matter!

So, let's get started now. Sustainability Simplified©



Christy is 4xi's Chief Sustainability Officer in Residence is the lead of Sustainability Simplified©. Christy specializes in ESG Advisory, Strategies, Sustainability Road Maps, Measurement, Systems, and Reporting.

To learn more about Sustainability Simplified© and 4xi visit our website: who we are, what we do, and how we inspire a brighter future, together:


4xi Global Consulting & Solutions is a team of talented leaders from both the client-side and service provider side, impacting the Human Experience (HX) for people at work, in education, rest, and at leisure.

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