17.10.2019

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A major step forward in reducing food loss and waste is critical to achieving the SDGs underlines the FAO in the 2019 edition of its annual State of Food and Agriculture report. The report provides new estimates of food loss from post-harvest up to retail to help identify appropriate measures for an effective reduction.

Around 14 per cent of the world's food is lost after harvesting and before reaching the retail level, including impacts by on-farm activities, storage and transportation, according to the report The State of Food and Agriculture 2019 - Moving forward on food loss and waste reduction published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in mid-October.

The report provides insights into how much food is lost - as well as where and why - at different stages of the food supply chain, calls for informed decisions for an effective reduction and offers new ways to measure progress. 

Food losses vary considerably from one region to another within the same commodity groups and supply chain stages. Losses and waste are generally higher for fruit and vegetables than for cereals and pulses at all stages in the food supply chain, with the exception of on-farm losses and those during transportation in Eastern and South-Eastern Asia. 

In lower-income countries, higher fresh fruit and vegetable loss is attributed to poor infrastructure – more than in industrialised countries.

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