EU wants to halve food waste by 2025

July 18, 2011 at 4:02 pm Leave a comment

Catering firms that agree to redistribute their unused or unsold food items to charitable groups for free could be awarded lucrative public contracts, under a new plan being considered by MEPs in Brussels.

A report entitled “Avoiding Food Waste” recommends changing public procurement rules across Europe so that companies are rewarded for reducing the amount of food waste they generate. The proposal is one of a number of measures aimed at halving the amount of food waste produced in the EU, which currently stands at 90 million tonnes a year. In Ireland alone, an estimated one million tonnes of food waste is created annually, mostly by the manufacturing sector.
Ireland East MEP Liam Aylward, who is helping to draft the report for the European Parliament’s Agriculture Committee, says redistributing unused food within State service providers would deliver immediate cost-saving results. “The majority of people think of food waste as the food and leftovers that go in the rubbish bin at the end of the meal, however it’s clear that food waste occurs in unacceptable quantities at each stage of the food supply chain, and wastage by consumers is only the tip of the iceberg,” said the Fianna Fáil MEP.
Other measures put forward by MEPs to lessen the “food waste” mountain include education and awareness-raising campaigns, and a plan to designate 2013 as “European Year Against Food Waste”. The report will be debated and voted upon by the Agriculture Committee in the autumn, before it goes before the entire European Parliament for consideration.

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Entry filed under: Agriculture and the EU, Food and the EU, Waste and the EU.

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