Food Waste

Climate & Environment
Over 900m tonnes of food is thrown away annually – UN report
Over 900m tonnes of food is thrown away annually – UN report
Credit: / Ella Olsson

The UN Environment Programme's Food Waste Index has published a UN research detailing global annual food waste, estimating that "931 million tonnes of food, or 17% of total food available to consumers in 2019" was thrown away.

"It shows that most of this waste comes from households, which discard 11% of the total food available at the consumption stage of the supply chain. Food services and retail outlets waste 5% and 2% respectively. On a global per capita-level, 121 kilograms of consumer level food is wasted each year, with 74 kilograms of this happening in households," the report reads.

“Reducing food waste would cut greenhouse gas emissions, slow the destruction of nature through land conversion and pollution, enhance the availability of food and thus reduce hunger and save money at a time of global recession,” said Inger Andersen, Executive Director of UNEP. “If we want to get serious about tackling climate change, nature and biodiversity loss, and pollution and waste, businesses, governments and citizens around the world have to do their part to reduce food waste. The UN Food Systems Summit this year will provide an opportunity to launch bold new actions to tackle food waste globally.”