food waste

A new international framework for reporting food waste has been launched today (6 June) at the Global Green Growth Forum in Copenhagen.

The Food Loss and Waste Accounting and Reporting Standard is the first global standard to set out how both businesses and governments should define and report upon levels of food waste and follows input from the Consumer Goods Forum, the Food and Agriculture Organization at the UN and Wrap.

“This standard is a real breakthrough,” said Andrew Steer, president and CEO at the World Resources Institute, which convened organisations involved in developing the new protocol. ”For the first time, armed with the standard, countries and companies will be able to quantify how much food is lost and wasted, where it occurs, and report on it in a highly credible and consistent manner.”

The UN estimates one third of all food is currently lost or wasted globally costing businesses up to $940bn each year. It’s hoped by using the new Standard to develop comparable inventories of how much food waste is being generated and where it goes, both governments and individual companies will use the data to “underpin, inform, and focus strategies” for minimising waste in the first place.

Major fmcg firms including Nestlé and Tesco have also given their backing to the new mechanism. ”I am convinced that by working together, we can develop effective solutions to reduce food loss and waste,” said Paul Bulcke, chief executive officer at Nestlé. ”The Food Loss and Waste Protocol is instrumental to help us achieve this goal.”

“We are pleased to have been the first UK retailer to publish third party-assured food waste data for our own operations and will continue to do so every year,” added Tesco CEO Dave Lewis. “This transparency and hard evidence is a cornerstone of our food waste work. Not only has this allowed us to identify where there are food waste hotspots in our own operations, it has also helped us to take action in those areas of food loss and waste. The new FLW Standard provides a common framework for measuring food loss and waste, and I hope this will enable others to publish their data and take action to tackle this important issue.”