Showing results for: Food waste/surplus food
This report from the Institution for Mechanical Engineers discusses the role that cold chain technologies can play in improving food security in developing countries. It argues that we need to address the question of how we can achieve sustainable food security and not just increased production.
In 2013 the UK’s Waste Resources Action Programme (WRAP) released the publication entitled Household Food and Drink Waste in the UK 2012 which quantified the amounts, types and reasons for food and drink being wasted from UK households. It found that the amount of avoidable household food waste in 2012 (4.2 million tonnes per year) is equivalent to six meals every week for the average UK household. Preventing this food waste could save the average family up to £700 a year and deliver significant environmental benefits through landfill avoidance and by mitigating climate change (on the basis that this ‘unnecessary’ food would not need to be produced and hence all the costs associated with its production and distribution would be avoided).
This paper reviews one aspect of the food sustainability challenge: the goal of producing more food – a goal that is unthinkingly accepted by some and vigorously contested by others. The paper argues that increased food production is necessary but also emphasises that this alone, as a response to the challenge, is not sufficient.
The UK based organization WRAP (Waste Reduction Action Plan) has released a new report which concludes that £6.9 billion worth of food, drink and packaging waste occurs in the grocery retail supply chain. The report identifies where in the sector the waste arises, what the waste is, and how it is managed. It also concludes that the waste totals 7% of the value of food and drink sales to households and argues that if the money was instead used for increasing exports or investment it would both help individual businesses and the economy to grow.
UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD PRESS RELEASE
A policy known as sustainable intensification could help meet the challenges of increasing demands for food from a growing global population, argues a team of scientists in an article in the journal Science.
Wise up on Waste is the name of a new mobile app from Unilever that was launched recently to assist professional restaurant and catering kitchens to monitor and track their food waste.
Due to Nepal’s large energy deficit where supply shortfalls and interrupted power affect both household and the national industry, the country is now looking for energy alternatives such as using its growing urban and industrial waste.
The authors of this study looked at the impact of measures introduced by Scandinavia’s largest hotel chain to reduce food waste. Plate sizes were reduced while signs were also posted encouraging customers to help themselves to food more than once (ie. signalling that they didn’t have to overload their plates the first time because they could always come back for more): the effect of these measures in combination was a 20% reduction in food waste.
The latest issue of the journal Proceedings of the Nutrition Society features a number of articles related to food, nutrition, and sustainability (including one by the FCRN’s founder, Tara Garnett).
A report by Low Carbon Oxford and LandShare entitled “Foodprinting Oxford” calculates the resources and risks involved with Oxford’s food supply, and explores how best to make the city’s food system more reliable. As part of LandShare’s “How to feed a city” programme, the report aims to help people understand where their food is coming from and how to make it more secure.
The FoodPrinting Oxford project takes a systematic look at two aspects of the city’s food system:
The Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMECHE) has produced a report entitled “Global Food Waste Not, Want Not,” which highlights the challenge of feeding a growing population, in a world where up to 50% of food is wasted. The report looks at where food waste takes place, the need to produce more food with finite resources (land use, water, and energy), and provides recommendations as to what the engineering should do to yield greater productivity.
You may be interested in this study co-authored by FCRN network member Toni Meier on diets and environmental impacts, published in the Journal of Environmental Science & Technology.
This article, published in Global Change Biology, examines the total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the EU27 livestock sector for the year 2007 utilizing a life cycle assessment, which examines every step and input during the creation of a product to calculate total GHG emissions. They also examined the GHG emissions from livestock production, consumption of imported livestock products and wastage.
The Courtauld Commitment is a voluntary “responsibility deal” aimed at improving resource efficiency and reducing the carbon and wider environmental impact of the grocery sector. This includes action to reduce food and packaging waste. Signatories to the deal include UK grocery retailers and manufacturers, and the initiative is led and coordinated by the Waste Resources Action Programme (WRAP).
This paper starts with a summary of why food waste is an issue, from an environmental and economic perspective, reviews other developed country estimates of food waste losses, and then calculates the volume and economic value of retail and consumer stage food losses in the US, looking at this at an aggregate and individual consumer level (it doesn’t quantify environmental impacts).
Oxfam have published a new report entitled ‘The Food Transformation’. This report, written by Brook Lyndhurst, examines the global food system and the social and environmental injustices inherent in it, and at the potential of consumer action to effect change.