Pope Francis condemns waste of food

Pope Francis has condemned the waste of food as a symptom of a “throwaway culture” and said hunger and malnutrition should never be considered “an inescapable fact of life”.

He called for greater efforts to build a worldwide “culture of encounter and solidarity”.

The Pope’s words came in his annual message for World Food Day, addressed to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation in Rome.

He called it “paradoxical” that globalisation is increasing the world’s awareness of situations of need, yet there appears to be “a growing tendency towards individualism and inwardness, which leads to a certain attitude of indifference — at a personal, institutional and state level — towards those who die of hunger and suffer as a result of malnutrition”.

“Something must change in us, in ourselves, in our mentality, in our societies,” he said.

Pope Francis called the waste of food — which, according to the FAO, accounts for approximately a third of worldwide food production — “one of the fruits of the ‘throwaway culture’ that often sacrifices men and women to the idols of profit and consumption; a sad sign of the ‘globalisation of indifference’, which is slowly ‘habituating’ us to the suffering of others, as if it were something normal.”

He said the tragic condition in which millions of hungry and malnourished people, including many children, live today is “one of the most serious challenges for humanity”.

“It is a scandal,” he said, “that there is still hunger and malnutrition in the world! Not only must we respond to immediate emergencies, but face together, at all levels, a problem that challenges our personal and social awareness, to bring about a just and lasting solution.”

Pope Francis said education in solidarity and a lifestyle that rejects the “throwaway culture”, placing each person and his or her dignity in the centre, must begin in the family.


Vatican Insider

Catholic News Service

Vatican Information Service

Image: Wanted in Rome

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