Food Waste: McKinley’s proposal deserves consideration

It makes no sense at all for schools, corrections institutions and other public entities to throw away food when there are those in our communities who would be delighted to get it. U.S. Rep. David McKinley is absolutely right about that.

As he does frequently when not needed on Capitol Hill, McKinley, R-W.Va., was making the rounds earlier this month, talking to his constituents about their concerns and desires. A few days ago, he visited the Mountaineer Food Bank in Braxton County.

Though Braxton County is not in McKinley’s First District, he is interested in its work and how he may be able to help it.

One idea is something he spearheaded many years ago, while in state government. It permitted schools, jails, etc., to donate unused edibles to food banks, shelters for the homeless, senior citizens’ centers and similar organizations.

McKinley said he would like a similar initiative at the federal level, perhaps with some financial assistance and protections for food banks against liability.

Why not? And why not make West Virginia a pilot program for such an initiative? It is something state officials should consider.

McKinley put the situation well in talking with a reporter: “Why are we filling up our dumpsters with food when we have people who are hungry?”

No doubt, there are mountains of red tape blocking the way to implementing such an initiative. McKinley ought to lead the way in cutting through them.