According to a UN report, about 17 percent of food sold worldwide ended up in the trash in 2019. It said that 931 million tons of food ended up in the bins of private homes, restaurants, stores, and other eateries.
That’s equivalent to about 23 million fully loaded trucks that, lined up, would reach seven times around the world, said the report released Thursday by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Calculated per Earth citizen, 121 kilograms of food waste was generated at the consumer level, 74 of it in households alone.
Private households throw away the most
For the report, the experts considered data on food waste in 54 countries – both still edible waste and non-edible leftovers such as bones and peels. In almost all the poorer or more affluent countries, large portions of the food sold ended up in the trash. Private households accounted for the largest share, with an average of eleven percent of food ending up in waste there, compared to five percent for restaurants and other food service providers and two percent for stores.
UNEP calls for reversal
At the same time, nearly 700 million people could not get enough food in 2019, according to the report. “Reducing food waste would reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce the destruction of nature through land-use change and pollution, increase food availability leading to less hunger, and save money – all at a time of global recession,” UNEP chief Inger Andersen said. She called on governments, businesses, and the people of the world to do their part.
- source: science.ORF.at/agencies/picture:pixabay.com
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