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By Laura Stec

Our Water Guzzling Food Factory

Uploaded: Jul 16, 2015

All the media about almonds lately got me feeling guilty and adjusting recipes to replace those thirsty little devils with other options like sesame and sun seeds.

Feeling guilty, that is, until I read how much water other foods take to produce:

One almond: 1 gallon
One walnut: 2 gallons 

A head of lettuce: 12 gallons 

One mandarin orange: 14 gallons

A bunch of grapes: 24 gallons 

A shower: 25 gallons 

A single washing machine load: 35 gallons 

One egg: 53 gallons 

One beef patty: 450 gallons 

A pound of chicken: 468 gallons 

A gallon of milk: 880 gallons 

A pound of beef: 1,800 gallons 

Animal products consume the most water because we first need to grow grain or hay to feed the animals.

If you're interested in learning more about where the water in Palo Alto comes from, read Veronica Weber's article in the Palo Alto Weekly. She tracks how it travels 167 miles through a 92-year old system that provides 2.4 million Bay Area residents with most of their drinking water. The paper prints a great picture of the route from Hetch Hetchy Reservoir to here, but I can't find the same graphic online.

I wonder where the water from Menlo Park and Mountain View comes from?

* Source: "Our Water-Guzzling Food Factory" by Nicholas Kristof, NYTimes.com, May 30, 2015

On another note - (macrobiotic) Summer Camp was wild this year - but we survived! For pictures of camp, the outdoor kitchen, the pickle class, and the bear visit click here.