There are many levels of organization and support that address the topic of food waste. While practical solutions and legislation often come from the local level, it is also meaningful to learn about what is being prioritized and discussed internationally.
In the 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Summit, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This agenda is a set of 17 goals to, “end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change“. All interconnected, the goals range in topic from gender equality, to combating desertification, to safe city design. Multiple of these goals speak directly to food waste issues in growth, access, and distribution of healthy food. Three of the goals which speak to these topics are 2, 3, and 12.
- Goal 2: “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture,”
- Goal 3: “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages,”
- Goal 12: “Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.”
All 17 goals have targets set to reach tangible accomplishments. The most pertinent to food waste is Goal 12, target 3 which states, “by 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses.” In a report published in 2013 by the World Resources Institute, approximately 32% of all food grown in the world was wasted. While staggering, this number doesn’t even take into consideration the natural and human resources which go into the 32% of wasted food (watch this 6 minute video made by the United Nations Environmental Program to briefly learn about the magnitude of these lost resources).
While we are working on the very local level at City Fruit, I find it important to learn about food waste on state, national, and global levels in order to understand Seattle’s local context more thoroughly.