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SAVE FOOD: Global Initiative on Food Loss and Waste Reduction

Community of Practice on Food Loss Reduction

Micro-nutrient loss in food loss and waste in fruit and vegetables, two FAO studies presented at the 1st PHL Congress in Rome

Food loss and waste from fruit and vegetables are as high as 50% (Gustavsson et al. 2011). There is lack of information on micro-nutrient losses in the food supply chains. Given the large scale of micro-nutrient deficiencies and the need of diversified diets to prevent and control micro-nutrient deficiencies worldwide, there is a real need for nutrient loss data to assess the causes and scale of the problem. It would also help inform data-driven food systems policies and programs to reduce nutrient losses and FLW, and to encourage sustainable food production and food consumption patterns. Reduction in FLW could potentially a sustainable solution to allow more foods being made available to feed the world and to reduce micronutrient deficiencies among the vulnerable people around the world. This topic was presented in several occasions during the 1st Post-harvest Congress held in Rome at the beginning of October. Two posters have been illustrated by Dr. Warren T.K. Lee, FAO Senior Nutrition Officer, and Professor Mauro Serafini from the Functional Foods and Metabolic Stress Prevention Laboratory of the Research Council on Agriculture, Italy.

Results from a new study conducted by FAO to determine Vitamin A losses, including β-carotene and retinol in selected food supply chains in Kenya and Norway have been presented. The Norwegian ‘ForMat’food waste database (2011-12) and the FAO food balance sheets with data on fruits and vegetables availability in Norway were used to estimate Vitamin A losses under the ‘Fruit and vegetables’ categories along the food supply chains. In Kenya, PHL of Vitamin A from four food items: banana (including plantain), maize, milk (all animals) and fish (all fish caught on land) in selected counties of Kenya were estimated based on the SAVE FOOD Kenya case study (2012-13).

In addition, another study has investigated losses of vitamins A and C associated with fruit and vegetables losses along the food supply chains in seven regions of the world during 2009. Results have shown that across the seven regions, agricultural production, post-harvest and consumption accounted for the majority of vitamins FLW along the food supply chains, while food processing accounted for the lowest FLW. Vitamins A and C losses and waste in fruits and vegetables due to FLW across the entire food supply chains are alarmingly high in the world, especially during agricultural production, post-harvest and consumption, reduction in FLW could avail more micro-nutrients for human consumption, thereby contributing to the alleviation of micro-nutrient deficiencies in the world’s vulnerable populations.

Governments and stakeholders in the food supply chains must act to implement concrete measures to reduce FLW in order to achieve global food security and nutrition while protecting natural resources and improving the sustainability of food systems. Nutrient losses recovered from FLW could be redistributed to feed vulnerable people with micro-nutrient deficiencies.

 

Further details at:

 

GLOBAL VARIATIONS IN MICRO-NUTRIENT LOSSES IN THE FRUIT AND VEGETABLES SUPPLY CHAIN

Mauro Serafini1,2, Warren T K Lee1, Elisabetta Toti2, Camelia Bucatariu3, Jorge M Fonseca3, Robert van Otterdijk3 and Divine Njie3

1Nutrition Division, 3Rural Infrastructure and Ago-Industries Division, FAO. Rome, Italy.

2Functional Foods and Metabolic Stress Prevention Laboratory, Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, Center of Food and Nutrition. Rome, Italy.

 

DETERMINATION OF MICRO-NUTRIENT LOSSES IN FOOD LOSSES AND WASTE (FLW) IN NORWAY AND KENYA - IMPLICATIONS ON FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION AND METHODOLOGIES FOR DATA COLLECTION

Warren T K Lee1, Mauro Serafini1,2, Elisabetta Toti2, Camelia Bucatariu3, Jorge M Fonseca3, Robert van Otterdijk3 and Divine Njie3

1Nutrition Division, 3Rural Infrastructure and Ago-Industries Division, FAO. Rome, Italy.

2Functional Foods and Metabolic Stress Prevention Laboratory, Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, Center of Food and Nutrition. Rome, Italy.

 

References

Gustavsson G, Cederberg C, Sonesson U (2011). Global Food Losses and Food Waste, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome.