National food waste reduction body to be established
A body will be established by the Australian Federal Government to help cut the nation’s food waste in half.
Announced at the inaugural National Food Waste Summit held in Melbourne on 20 November 2017, the independent organisation will work with the food industry and other bodies to reduce food waste.
The organisation will also raise money to help fund waste reduction efforts and will evaluate whether progress is being made in reducing waste levels.
The announcement was made as part of the launch of the National Food Waste Strategy, which the Australian Federal Government first committed to in 2016.
After months of industry, academic and non-for-profit consultation, the strategy was developed with the aim of cutting Australian food waste in half by 2030.
Food waste costs the Australian economy approximately AUD $20 billion annually with Australian consumers throwing away 3.1 million tonnes of edible food each year.
Another 2.2 million tonnes is disposed by the commercial and industrial sector.
Foodbank welcomes strategy but calls for more
Foodbank Australia, which assists in feeding those in need by saving food which would otherwise be wasted, has welcomed the strategy but has asked for more to be done to address food insecurity in Australia.
Chief Executive Officer of Foodbank Australia, Brianna Casey, said a food insecurity strategy is also needed.
“A food waste strategy is long-overdue, but we are concerned that it appears to lack the necessary funding to ensure rapid implementation,” Casey said.
“Nevertheless, it is a great first step in reducing the amount of perfectly edible food that is wasted, particularly given this country’s worrying food insecurity problem.”
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