Source of article: https://www.ifst.org/resources/information-statements/food-waste
Food loss and waste occur throughout the whole food system and have wide-reaching impacts, which extend to the economy, the depletion of limited resources, and food security i.e. when all people at all times have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food. Food wastage should, therefore, be prevented to protect both our environment and social needs.
This information statement outlines the leading causes of food wastage across the food system, its impacts, how it is measured and strategies to reduce it.
The definition of ‘food waste’
The definition of ‘food waste’ differs between organisations and between individual country jurisdictions. This makes it challenging to align approaches to reduce both food loss and food waste and when communicating to different audiences. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) differentiates between food waste and food loss in this way:
“The decrease in the quantity or quality of food resulting from decisions and actions by food suppliers in the chain, excluding retailers, food service providers and consumers.”
“The decrease in the quantity or quality of food resulting from decisions and actions by retailers, food service providers and consumers.”