According to the update to the Food Waste Monitor, which was published today by Wageningen Food & Biobased Research, food waste per capita in our country remained the same in 2018 as it was in 2017.
The Netherlands has expended a great deal of energy creating awareness in the business community and among consumers. Stichting Samen Tegen Voedselverspilling (Food Waste Free United) was set up in 2018, and now nearly 100 different parties have joined forces to work towards preventing and reducing food waste. However, it is still too early to see any effect of this in the figures. However, it is clear that the Stichting Samen Tegen Voedselverspilling has delivered a number of promising initiatives, including the Verspillingsvrije week (waste-free week) that started today.
Extent of waste and assumptions
In 2018, waste in the food chain amounted to between 96 and 149 kilograms per capita. An exact figure cannot be provided because the proportion of food in waste streams was not always available. This is why a number of assumptions were made about the minimum and maximum quantity of food per waste stream.
In consultation with the Stichting Samen Tegen Voedselverspilling, WUR will examine whether and how the Food Waste Monitor can be made specific to a link in the chain. This will lead to more precise estimates of the amount of food waste and will provide insight into where in the chain and for which products the problem occurs most. This information will provide the government and the business community concrete leads for improving value creation for waste streams and further reduction of food waste.
To create a sector-specific monitor, it is crucial that links in the chain fully disclose information about waste in their sector. The Dutch retail sector has been leading the way over the past few years. Thanks to this research, there is now better and more reliable insight into food waste in supermarkets; this is important for taking targeted action. In the upcoming period, researchers will collaborate with other sectors to further increase these insights.