Food waste could be considered as the best example of inefficiency in the agri-food chain. It contributes to depletion of limited natural resources on which the food system depends, such as land, water and biodiversity, and along the food supply chain it also contributes to total global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
In October 2021 the European Commission (EC) published a call for feedbacks on a Roadmap for Food Waste Reduction Targets. The initiative is part of the EU Farm to Fork Strategy (which, in turn, is a part of the European Green Deal) for a fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly food system. The objective of the initiative is a revision of the Waste Framework Directive by introducing therein food waste reduction targets, thus also supporting the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste, a multi-stakeholder platform already established (as part of the Circular Economy Action Plan).
The envisaged outcome is to achieve reduction of food waste along the food supply chain and consequently to contribute to reaching the UN SDG 12 Target 12.3. The proposal will define the level of reduction for different stages of the food supply chain Moreover, each Member State will be able to choose the most effective measures for reaching the targets, taking into account its specific national situation. Preparation of this initiative will be supported by an impact assessment and the EC plans to adopt the proposal in the 2nd quarter of 2023.
Once the new food waste reduction targets will be into force, they will call for a stronger cooperation among actors along the whole value chain, from citizens to the public and private sector, that may lead to many benefits (social, environmental, economic) of reducing the food wasting.