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FAO calls to stop foods wasting to reduce global hunger

15.10.2019 17:56 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) As of yesterday, FAO (UN Food and Agriculture Organization) issued its annual State of Food and Agriculture report with findings that could lead to a reduction in food loss and waste, UN Radio reports. It is to be admitted, as of this year Oct, the World Food Programme (WFP) has also launched its awareness-raising #StopTheWaste campaign. As to the report, the FAO study contains fresh estimates of the scale of the problem, enabling a better understanding of the challenge, and suggesting possible solutions, by looking into why, and where, loss and waste take place. The FAO makes a distinction between food losses, which occur at the stage when food is harvested, up until the moment when it is sold; and food waste, which occurs during the sale and consumption of food. As to the FAO report, globally around 14% of the world foods is lost after harvesting and before reaching the retail level, including through on-farm activities, storage and transportation. However, the food losses vary considerably from one region to another within the same commodity groups and supply chain stages. The FAO report highlights the need, and offers a new methodology, to measure carefully losses at each stage in the food supply chain. Doing so will help to identify critical loss points across the supply chain. These are points where food losses have the highest magnitude, the greatest impact on food security, and the largest economic dimensions, as well as to identify the appropriate measures for their reduction. It also points to the importance of reducing food waste, which occurs at the retail and consumption level and is linked to limited shelf life and consumer behaviour, such as demanding food products that meet aesthetic standards, and limited incentive to avoid food waste. «As we strive to make progress towards reducing food loss and waste, we can only be truly effective if our efforts are informed by a solid understanding of the problem,» FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu admits within the foreword to the report. FAO Chief stresses no one can allow himself to throw away the foods when more than 820 million people within the world continue to go hungry every day.

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