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Food waste is not just a ‘rich country’ problem!

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Food Waste Index 2024 report revealed that while 783 million people grappled with hunger in 2022, more than 1 billion meals a day were wasted worldwide.

According to the Food Waste Index 2024 report published by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) on the occasion of the International Zero Waste Day on 30 March, 19 percent of the food produced worldwide in 2022 went to waste.

Food waste is not only a problem for rich countries!

According to the report, only four G20 countries (Australia, Japan, UK, USA) and the European Union have favourable forecasts for reducing food waste to half by 2030. Canada and Saudi Arabia’s household estimates are favourable, while Brazil’s estimate is expected to be favourable in late 2024.

The data confirm that food waste is not just a ‘rich country’ problem, with levels of household food waste differing by only 7kg per capita from the average levels observed in high-income, upper middle and lower middle-income countries. At the same time, warmer countries appear to generate more food waste per capita in households, due to greater consumption of fresh food containing potentially inedible parts and a lack of robust cold chains.

The cost of both food loss and waste to the global economy is estimated at around USD 1 trillion...

Urban areas are expected to particularly benefit from efforts to reduce food waste and strengthen circularity. Rural areas generally waste less food, with more food scraps going to pets, livestock and home composting…

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