The amount of edible food that goes to waste in America has reached appalling proportions. Each year, about 72 billion pounds of otherwise consumable foodstuffs never make it onto store shelves, according to estimates from Feeding America, a large hunger-relief group. Annually, that amounts to roughly 40 percent of all food in the US, the group said. Those figures don’t include the volumes of food that spoil either at rest or in transit. Nor does it cover the mountains of scraps thrown away every day by hotels, restaurants, consumers and the like.