Global food waste management: an implementation guide for cities

16 May 2018

Globally, food waste has become an increasingly recognised environmental issue over the last decade. Not only has the issue of wasted food become an ethical one in a world where approximately 800 million people suffer from hunger, but the environmental impacts of producing food that is then discarded can no longer be overlooked. As population and urbanisation grows, more food is being produced and more food is being wasted. Moreover, food wasted in an urban context creates severe environmental and public health consequences that have a negative impact upon human well-being and the environment. For the first time in Human history, over 50% of the global population lives in cities and by 2050, this will rise to over 70%. This concentration of people is putting cities’ infrastructure under tremendous pressure – the need to provide clean water, sewage treatment, public transport, maintain urban hygiene, build waste treatment facilities, provide education and health services, in cities growing constantly, is an enormous task; however, cities also provide unique opportunities for energy, resources and services efficiency, health services, technological innovation and sustainable development.

This report intends to be a guide to assist the decision-makers in cities that recognise the challenges of food waste management and wish to find sustainable and effective solutions.

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