Getting Ready for FIC: 2019 Future of Logistics Conference, Let’s Reduce Food Loss and Waste!
We will be bringing some industry data and expertise to the Food Innovation Camp at FIC: 2019 in Hamburg.
We will be attending FIC: 2019 Future of Logistics Conference and participating in the Food Innovation Camp next month in Hamburg, Germany. In preparation for the event, we have gathered some interesting data about European food loss and waste.
The global food supply chain is in dire need of innovation. About one-third of all food produced for human consumption is either lost or wasted, that comes out to about 1.3 billion tons.* For Europe and the United States, most of the food waste occurs at the consumer level.* Food that is still good gets thrown away at home, at restaurants, and at grocery stores.
Here at ST, we don’t have control over food waste at the consumer level, but we can have a positive impact on food loss earlier in the supply chain. For reference, the 5 system boundaries of the food supply chain (FSC) are 1. Agricultural Production 2. Post-Harvest Handling and Storage 3. Processing 4. Distribution 5. Consumption*.
Our areas of focus in the FSC are “Post-Harvest Handling and Storage” and “Distribution”.
So just how much food is wasted or lost in these areas of the FSC?
According to the FAO report, Europe produces about 200 million tons of fruits and vegetables per year. Of the 200 million tons, 5% is lost during the “Post-Harvest Handling and Storage” stage, and 10% is lost at the “Distribution: Supermarket Retail” stage.* This equates to about 10 million tons and 20 million tons respectively. That is a lot of lost produce!
Also astounding is the amount of European cereal products lost in the FSC. Cereal products, mainly wheat, is the largest food crop produced in Europe, about 400 million tons are produced per year. 4% is lost in the “Post-Harvest Handling and Storage” stage, about 16 million tons. 2% is lost in the “Distribution: Supermarket Retail” stage, about 8 million tons.*
How can we help? Cost-effective monitoring solutions can mitigate much of the damage and food loss during these stages. IoT sensors can monitor temperature, humidity, and shock while a network of mobile apps syncs sensor data, location, and status to a cloud-based platform. More control means less waste!
We look forward to sharing more information and our solutions at FIC: 2019. See you in Hamburg!
* FAO. 2011. Global food losses and food waste – Extent, causes and prevention. Rome. http://www.fao.org/docrep/014/mb060e/mb060e.pdf