Target: Halve food waste

food waste

An international panel of experts, Wednesday, appealed to governments to commit to halving food waste and loss by 2030.

The panel says the waste is morally, economically and environmentally unacceptable.

Giving the panel his endorsement, Pope Francis tweeted: “We must put an end to the culture of waste, we who pray to the Lord to give us our daily bread. Food waste contributes to hunger and to climate change.”

The expert panel defines food waste as that which is discarded by the consumer, restaurants or supermarkets and in rich countries, households and restaurants prepare large portions, resulting in “plate waste”, leftovers that often go uneaten.

British advocacy group WRAP says about one-third of all food produced in the world is lost or wasted.

It estimates that by reducing consumer food waste could save between US$120 and 300 billion per year by 2030.

WRAP’s chief executive Marcus Gover told the conference that about 10 million tonnes of food is lost or wasted in the UK each year.

He says this amount of food is enough to fill St Peter’s Square to the top of the basilica 10 times over.

He illustrated a study showing that, of 100 potatoes ordered by a London restaurant, only 25 were actually eaten.

WRAP maintains that strategies to achieve economic and environmental gains by reducing food waste will also improve economic performance and tackle climate change by reducing the amount of food that is wasted in agriculture, transport, storage and consumption.

The appeal to address food waste came at the end of a two-day conference at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences attended by more than 50 scientists, academics, economists, corporate leaders and United Nations officials from 24 countries.

“We call on our leaders, and on all of us, for deepened commitment to action toward halving food loss and waste by 2030 — an achievable goal based on existing knowledge and technology,” a statement said.



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