The objective of this study was to explore the associations between food waste and the diet quality of foods purchased and with grocery purchasing behaviors. This was a cross-sectional study among 109 primary household food providers conducting primary shopping. Participants were recruited outside of local grocery stores and were asked to complete a survey assessing amounts of avoidable food waste and grocery purchasing behaviors. The diet quality of the foods purchased was assessed from grocery receipts using the Grocery Purchase Quality Index-2016 (GPQI-2016). Variables were associated using linear regression, analysis of covariance, and point biserial correlations. We found that fresh fruits (63%) and leafy greens (70%) were the foods that were the most wasted. The GPQI-2016 total score was significantly inversely associated with the total amount of food wasted (β = −0.63; 95% CI: −1.14,−0.12) after adjusting for important confounders. The reason “food past the date printed on the package” was directly correlated with food wasted (r = 0.40; p
< 0.01) but inversely correlated with GPQI-2016 score (r = −0.21; p
= 0.04). Food wasted, but not the GPQI-2016 score, was significantly higher among those who grocery shop 2–4 times per week compared to 1 time every 1–2 weeks (p
= 0.02). In conclusion, food waste is inversely associated with diet quality and directly associated with grocery purchasing frequency.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited