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Supply Chain

Total Global Food Waste Valued At $700 Billion Per Annum, Study Finds

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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Total Global Food Waste Valued At $700 Billion Per Annum, Study Finds

According to a new report by global consulting firm The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), global food loss and food waste represents an estimated cost of $700 billion annually.

The problem of food waste is a growing concern both for the industry and the consumers, and has led to a number of major reports in recent months.

After a recent research funded by the European Research Council, which claimed that a third of all fruit and veg are wasted because of their appearance, BCG has published a study entitled Tackling the 1.6-Billion-Ton Food Loss and Waste Crisis, saying that it expects that food waste could be a $1.5 trillion problem by 2030, if matters aren't addressed.

Currently, the total volume of food waste is around 1.6 billion tonnes, according to BCG, but this could rise to 2.1 billion tonnes by the end of the next decade, the group warns.

Food loss and waste are projected to increase in most regions around the world, with a significant spike in Asia, the report says.


The report outlines five key drivers of the food waste issue: lack of awareness of the issue among consumers and others, inadequate supply chain infrastructure, supply chain inefficiency, a lack of collaboration among groups across the food value chain, and poorly designed tax and regulatory policies.

These driving factors bring the total value of the food waste issue to nearly $700 billion annually, with different waste levels recorded across the different elements of the supply chain.


Commenting on the issue of food waste and loss, Esben Hegnsholt, a BCG partner and coauthor of the publication said, “Roughly one-third of the food produced around the world goes to waste.

“This represents a challenge so massive that it was included in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. But while it is a daunting problem, there are steps that can be taken today, actions that draw on currently available technology and know-how, to dramatically slash food loss and waste across the value chain.”

© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Matthieu Chassain. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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