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Global Consumer Goods Group Commits to Reducing Food Production Waste in Half

The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) has committed to cutting in half the amount of food waste by 2025 that its 400 retailer and manufacturer members generate in their operations.

The Paris-based global industry organization also said it will support the United Nations’ (UN) Goals on food waste reduction for both supply chains and consumers, according to a news release.

The CGF will press its members to focus on preventing food waste and also maximizing its recovery toward the goal of halving food waste compared to a 2016 baseline.

The group aims to contribute to the UN goals by 2030 to cut in half per capita global food waste at the consumer level, and reduce food loss along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses, and maximize the value of the remaining waste.

The CGF’s Food Waste Resolution commits to aligning the industry around the World Resources Institute’s Food Loss & Waste Protocol.

The group points out that one-third of food calories produced are never eaten, which represents a global economic cost of $750 billion per year. If food waste were a country, the CGF said, its carbon footprint would be third only to China and the United States.

"The resolution on food waste the CGF board of directors has adopted demonstrates our willingness to engage and take action in an area where a collective industry effort can make a difference,” said Paul Bulcke, CEO of Nestlé S.A.

Food waste continues as a cornerstone issue for the waste and recycling industry, and it was a dominant theme at this year’s WasteExpo. In just one day, food-related messages at the show included Zero Waste Energy’s Jeff Draper talking about some of his company’s approaches to anaerobic digestion (AD) and some of the challenges AD is facing. Communities struggle to enact food waste collection programs and face the challenges of cost, education and contamination, said David Schneider, vice president of business development for Anaergia, at an AD session.

The increased demand for organics recycling is affecting waste truck design. McNeilus Truck & Manufacturing Inc. for one offers a split-body back loader with one portion optimized for organics collection. And composter Green Good Composting conducted live composting at its booth, including composting some of the food waste being generated during the course of the show.

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