Now is the time to stop wasting food

Food wastage needs to be curbed now if we are to ensure food security in a time of climate change and a growing population.

In an article on Reuters Alert.Net, senior fellow at the World Agroforestry Centre, Dennis Garrity is quoted as saying: “With the World Bank warning of the possibility of a four-degrees-centigrade temperature rise by the end of the decade and an expected world population of nine billion by 2050, global food production and supply is going to be highly affected”.

An estimated 870 million people go hungry every day, yet global food waste amounts to 1.3 billion tonnes every year. Reducing this amount in both the developed and developing world is key to addressing hunger, especially as droughts, floods, storms and climate-related plant diseases are expected to significantly reduce access to food in the future.

The Reuters article looks at how food ends up in a rubbish dump in Nairobi, Kenya either because people buy on impulse, purchase items that are almost past their sell-by date, cook more than they can eat or simply buy food that just never gets eaten.

As in many developing countries, food is also lost in Kenya because of poor post-harvesting handling, pests and diseases, poor storage or contamination and because farmers have no market to sell their produce.

Two new campaigns have been launched this year with the aim of reducing global food waste: Think Eat Save- Reduce Your Foodprint from the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO); and FoodTank, a food think tank initiative which aims to connect food producers, consumers, policy makers, activists and farmers.

Read the full story: Cutting food waste crucial to ensuring food security, experts say