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Resource Efficiency

Reducing global food waste will alleviate pressure on other precious natural resources


The UK-based Institution of Mechanical Engineers has published a new report, ‘Global Food – Waste Not, Want Not’, which highlights the issue of food waste around the world. The report looks at how increased productivity in food production could alleviate stresses on other precious resources such as land, energy and water. Read more…

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has forecast that the world population will rise to 9.5 billion by 2075 and says the capability to produce enough food will increasingly become a key issue. Currently, an estimated 30-50% of the four billion metric tonnes of food produced annually does not reach the consumer, mainly due to poor harvesting, storage and transportation, and consumer and market wastage.

The report argues that tackling food wastage and improving productivity will also ease demand on land, energy and water, which are all used intensively in food production. It recommends that the FAO collaborates with the international engineering community to transfer knowledge and develop technologies to improve food handling and reduce waste in the initial food production stages. It also says that governments in developing countries should pursue policies aimed at changing consumer expectations in an attempt to prevent food being wasted on the basis of its cosmetic appearance.

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Global Food – Waste Not, Want Not

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