Amtrak Loses Millions In Food Sales Each Year

The train company cites food waste and oversight for the losses

Bad news for the railroad corporation: Amtrak now reports more than $800 million in food losses each year, thanks to food waste, food theft, and government oversight, reports The New York Times. 

Officials from Amtrak had to report to a congressional hearing at a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing; they reported that since 2002, the railroad has lost $834 million. Where does all that money go? Some of it is caused by employees stealing food from the department (about $7 to $9 million each year).

Another problem is the mess behind two departments running the food services for Amtrak, said Amtrak president, Joseph H. Boardman to the NYT, "We are still looking for ways to improve our cost recovery."

To make up for some of the losses, Amtrak has introduced a credit card system that they say helps avoid food theft, track inventory, and reduce staff on board trains. But it still may not be enough to offset the hefty charges for passengers: try $16 for a hamburger that costs Amtrak $9.60, or $3.40 for a soda that costs Amtrak $2.