How much water does it take to make a …?

April 11, 2015

California Governor Jerry Brown has asked Californians to use 25 percent less water than we are now, which may be a problem for some of us who have been “letting yellow mellow” for a long time. And what about absentee owners and some local families who seem not to know there’s a drought and continue to water lawns daily?

Here are some water and food facts to consider on how much water it takes to grow or make our food.

2,500 gallons for 1 pound of beef

1,232 gallons to produce an 8-ounce steak

616 to 634 gallons to produce enough beef for a 4 ounce burger

37 gallons for 1 cup of coffee

36 gallons to grow 1 egg

32-34 gallons to make 1 glass of wine (smaller glasses than beer glasses)

20 gallons to produce a glass of beer (bigger glasses than wine glasses)

18 gallons to produce 1 apple

11 gallons to make a slice of bread

5.4 gallons for a head of broccoli

3.5 gallons for 1 head of lettuce

1.1 gallons to grow one almond (80 percent of world’s almonds are grown in California)

1 gallon for 1 cricket, abundant in Omega-3 fatty acids.

And a whopping 1800 gallons to grow the cotton to make 1 pair of jeans.

Sources: Orange County Water District,, and


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Kathleen Thompson Hill © 2017

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