Food losses and waste in the context of sustainable food systems

"The issue of global food losses and waste has recently received much attention and has been given high visibility. According to FAO, almost one-third of food produced for human consumption – approximately 1.3 billion tonnes per year – is either lost or wasted globally: their reduction is now presented as essential to improve food security and to reduce the environmental footprint of food systems. In this context, the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), in its Thirty-ninth Session (October 2012) requested the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) to undertake a study on “Food losses and waste in the context of sustainable food systems” to be presented to the CFS Plenary in 2014. The very extent of food losses and waste invites to consider them not as an accident but as an integral part of food systems. Food losses and waste are consequences of the way food systems function, technically, culturally and economically. This report analyses food losses and waste in a triple perspective: a systemic perspective, a sustainability perspective, including the environmental, social and economic dimensions of sustainability, and a food security and nutrition perspective, looking at how food losses and waste relate to the various dimensions of food security and nutrition." (

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