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Target employee outraged after hundreds of candy products are pulled from shelves and marked 'destroy': 'They are still good until next year'

"They should be donated."

“They should be donated."

Photo Credit: iStock

Food waste is a serious problem in the United States. According to non-profit organization ReFED, 91 million tons of surplus food was generated throughout the nation in 2021. 

There are a number of reasons to be frustrated by this development. For one, 35.9% of this total ended up in landfill, where it will contribute to the production of methane

This planet-warming gas is 80 times more powerful when compared to carbon dioxide at trapping planet-warming gases in the atmosphere in the first 20 years of its presence, as the Environmental Defense Fund observed.

Then there's the case that, whether nutritious or not, perfectly good food that could otherwise be eaten is disposed of because it isn't selling. 

It's a waste of resources from production to packaging and to the transport required to take the products to store — and the food could even be helpful for disadvantaged local residents.

In a post on Reddit, one user uploaded a picture of a shopping cart full to the brim with 534 packets of Crunchy Cookie M&Ms that were marked as "destroy" at the Target store they worked at.

"All of these are going to waste just because they are salvaged out and we aren't allowed to take them anymore and they most likely aren't going to get donated like it's supposed to," they captioned the post. "And they are still good until next year." 

Photo Credit: u/Individual-Thanks968 / Reddit

According to ReFED, 5.12 million tons of food waste was produced by the retail industry in 2021, making up 5.6% of the United States' total.

Overproduction accounts for 8.4% of the total food waste in the retail industry, and these M&Ms are just a small example of the type of perfectly good items that can get thrown out. As the Redditor observed, they were not marked to expire until the following year, so getting rid of them is a serious waste.

Commenters on the post were similarly furious at the store's decision.

"They should be donated," one user said, with another adding, "With the cost of food being so high, donations would be appreciated."

It seems there are a number of more resourceful solutions to make use of this food, and seeing such needless waste is an infuriating example of inexplicable decisions that can have a negative impact on the environment.

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