HLPE consultation on the V0 draft of the Report: Food losses and waste in the context of sustainable food systems

23.12.2013 - 31.01.2014

In November 2012, the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) requested the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) to conduct a study on Food Losses and Waste in the Context of Sustainable Food Systems. Final findings of the study will feed into CFS 41 Plenary session on policy convergence (October 2014).

As part of the process of elaboration of its reports, the HLPE now seeks inputs, suggestions, comments on the present V0 draft. This e-consultation will be used by the HLPE to further elaborate the report, which will then be submitted to external expert review, before finalization and approval by the HLPE Steering Committee.

HLPE V0 drafts are deliberately presented – with their range of imperfections – early enough in the process, at a work-in-progress stage when sufficient time remains to give proper consideration to the feedback received so that it can be really useful and play a real role in the elaboration of the report. It is a key part of the scientific dialogue between the HLPE Project Team and Steering Committee and the rest of the knowledge community. In that respect, the present draft identifies areas for recommendations at a very initial stage, and the HLPE would welcome any related evidence-based suggestions or proposals.

In order to strengthen the related parts of the report, the HLPE would welcome submission of material, suggestions, references, examples, on the following important aspects:

  1. How to measure Food Losses and Waste (FLW)? FLW can be measured from different perspectives (weight, caloric and nutrition value, monetary value…) with different approaches presenting pros and cons, and methodological issues.  Do you think that the V0 draft covers properly the aspects of FLW measurements, including nutrient losses? Is there additional evidence about estimates of past and current food losses and waste, which would deserve to be mentioned?
  2. What are the key policy aspects to reduce food losses and waste in order to improve the sustainability of food systems, in different countries and contexts? Is there evidence about the potential of economic incentives, and which ones (taxes, etc.)? What margins for policies in the context of food safety laws and regulations, such as expiration dates?
  3. Can respondents submit concrete initiatives or successful interventions having reduced food losses and waste, currently taking place, conducted by governments, stakeholders, private sector, civil society?
  4. What is the cost-benefit potential (and barrier to adoption) of different options, including technologies, to reduce and prevent food losses and waste at different stage of the food chain?
  5. Cold chains and cold storage (including adaptable low-cost technologies for cold storage such as evaporative cooling, charcoal coolers, zeer pots, etc): what could be cost-effective and adapted solutions to reduce food losses and waste and to improve the sustainability of food systems, given the diversity of national contexts?
  6. Systemic approaches and solutions to reduce food losses and waste: Reducing food losses and waste is a matter which concerns the coordinated joint action (and change) by many actors, producers, retailers, consumers, private sector, governments. Which systemic solutions/approaches would be the most effective to reduce FLW, towards more sustainable food systems? At that systemic level, which drivers would create leverage for radical change?

We thank in advance all the contributors for being kind enough to read and comment and suggest inputs on this early version of the report.

We look forward for a rich and fruitful consultation.

The HLPE Project Team and Steering Committee.

Giregon Olupot College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Makerere University ...

Dear Vishweshwariah Prakash and your team,

I am happy to have been among those requested to provide feedback on the document titled Food Losses And Waste In The Context Of Sustainable Food Systems V0 DRAFT.

Generally, I found the document very informative and interesting to read and I look forward to receiving the final version. It may not be within my mandate to highlight some of the minor errors in the document but please bear with me if I have overstepped my mandate.

I am of the view that a list of acronyms be created for easy reference, since there are quite a number of abbreviations: HLPE, FLW, OECD, SFS, GHG, APHLIS, WRAP, BCFN, EPA, IFPRI, HACCP, NCC, EC, UR, GAP, GVP, IICA, CaC, USD, ALRMP, FEBA, WFP, BSE, AVEBE, FSC, to mention but a few. They may look familiar but for those who will find them inconveniencing to memorise, a section on acronyms would be ok.

These words are incorrectly spelt or misused:

‘tor’ instead of ‘for’ (page 21 line 34)

‘loose’ instead of ‘lose’ (papge 22 line 14)

‘vegetables’ instead of ‘vegetable’ (page 24 line 18)

‘moist’ instead of ‘moisture’ and ‘rotten’ instead of ‘rotting’ (page 61 Box 15 para 3 last line)

‘marketing’ instead of ‘marketed’ (page 63 Box 17 para 1 last line)

‘way’ instead of ‘ways’ (page 64 line 50)

‘mean’ instead of ‘means’ (page 65 line 28)


The following words are stacked together and should be separated by spaces:

Page 6: line 46 words 9 & 10; line 47 words 4 & 5

Page 8 line 29 words 1 & 2

Page 11 line 10 words 1 & 2 of the new sentence; line 37 words 3 &4

Page 12 Box 2: entire opening sentence

Page 13 line 34 between countries in brackets and the word ‘have’

Page 16 line 26: inside brackets between the author and ‘et al)

Page 17 line 9 words 6 & 7

Page 18 line 9: 8th & 9th words of the new sentence

Page 19 lines: 21 the last words; 35 12th & 13th words; 37 1st and 2nd words; footnote: ‘foodcommodity’ instead of ‘food commodity’; ‘marketscombined’ instead of ‘markets combined’

Page 20 lines: 5 2nd & 3rd words; 6 last two words of old sentence; 27 4th & 3rd last words

Page 21 line 18: 4th & 3rd last words

Page 22 lines: 17 1st & 2nd words of new sentence; 21 5th & 4th last words; 22 3rd & 2nd last words; 53 5th & 4th last words

Page 23 lines: 15 ‘foodsafety’ instead of ‘food safety’; 22 1st & 2nd words; 30 5th, 6th & 7th words

Page 24 line 52: ‘weightproducing’ instead of ‘weight producing’ & ‘dayin’ instead of ‘day in’

Page 25 lines 34, 38 & 39

Page 26 line 1

Page 28 lines: 25 & 43

Page 29 lines: 3, 20 & 45

Page 31 lines 9, 25, 27 & 42

Page 33 lines: 12 & 22

Page 34 lines: 37, 45 & 46

Page 35 line 20

Page 36 line 49

Page 37 line 50

Page 38 lines: 2, 12, 17 & 22

Page 40 line 25

Page 42 lines: 37, 39 & 41

Page 44 line 21 (title)

Page 46 (Box 4) last sentence paras 3, 4: sentences 1 & 2; last para (2nd last line)

Page 47 lines: 4, 8, 9 & 12; Box 5 line 2

Page 48 Box 6 para 2 line 3; para 3 lines 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 9

Page 50 lines: 10, 16, 19

Page 51 lines: 21, 25, 26, 33, 35 & 36

Page 52 lines: 1, 2, 3; Box 9 para 1 3rd last line; para 2 3rd line

Page 53 line 17

Page 54 lines: 33 & 41

Page 55 lines: 6, 8; Box 11 para 2 2nd last line

Page 56 Box 12 para 2 lines 1, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 & last line

Page 57 lines: 6, 19, 36, 38, 47

Page 58 lines: 10, 20, 22, 26; Box 13 para 1 line 3 & 4

Page 59 lines: 11 & 44

Page 62 lines: 10 & 27

Page 63 line 8; Box 17 para 1 lines 2, 4 & 9

Page 64 lines: 29 & 44

Page 65 line 32


The following sentences are also stacked together with no spaces between full stops and the intervening sentences:

Page 6 line 28

Page 11 line 14

Page 12 line 20

Box 2 line 2

Page 15 line 14

Page 21 line 36

Page 23 line 6

Page 26 line 13

Page 28 lines: 51 & 52

Page 30 line 52

Page 31 line 53

Page 33 line 25

Page 40 lines: 5 & 14

Page 46 Box 4 para 3 line 7; para 4 line 3

Page 47 Box 5 last bullet

Page 50 line 26

Page 52 lines: 16 & 25

Page 53 Box 10 line 7

Page 54 line 50

Page 56 Box 12 line 7

Page 57 lines: 9, 18, 38 & 58

Page 58 lines: 7 & 21

Page 60 line 1

Page 62 line 24

Page 66 line 9.


I also noted that there are references that are indicated in the text but not cited e.g. but not exhaustive:

Alexander (2013)

BCFN (2012)

Bett & Nguyo (2007)

BIOIS (2010)

Bulitha et al (2012)

Cohen (2013)

Cohen et al (2003)

HLPE (2012)

Parfitt (2013)

Ericsen (2011)

Eldin & Farag (2008)

IFPRI (2010)

IME (2013)

Ingram (2008)

Weber (2008)

C-Tech (2004)

Florkowski et al (2009)

Food Chain (2009)

Frimpong et al (2012)

Fox & Fineche (2013)

Gettinger (1996)

Goodwin et al (2002)

Greger (2007)

Humera et al (2009)

Johns (2005)

Kader (2002; 2005)

Kallaberken (2013)

Kankolongo et al (2009)

Kessova (2013)

Lewis et al (2005)

Li (2003)

Ilich & Vukosavlevic (2010)

McCaffree (2009)

Midgley (2013)

Mittal (2007)

Nicholas (2002)

Njie (2009)

Postharvest Hub (2008)

This author is Rutten (2013) (in text) but cited as Rutton (2013) in the list of references.

Schneider (2013)

SEPA (2008)

Thiagarajah (2012)

USDA (2009)

Vereijken & Linnemann (2006)

Webber et al (2001)

Webber et al (2008)

Whitehair (2013)

Williams (2012)

WRAP (2012)

Wyngaard (2013)

Yang (2006)

Yusuf & He (2011)


Giregon Olupot

Department of Agricultural Production

College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

Makerere Uuniversity

P. O Box 7062

Kampala Uganda

Emails: giregono@gmail.com; olugire@gmail.com

Alexandre Meybeck FAO/UNEP sustainable food systems programme, Italy

The zero draft provides a good overall perspective on FLW. I would just like to draw attention on a few points, mainly related to the link between FLW and sustainable food systems:

FLW are a very visible sign of inefficiency (in terms of use of resources). As such it should also raise awareness on the need to improve resource efficiency in general (and not hide other inefficiencies).

The draft makes a good synthetic description of causes of food losses (some precisions on animal products, including fish, would be welcome).

More is needed on waste and consumer behavior. Interesting elements for Italy in Segre (2013), for Portugal in Baptista et al 2012. Some questions, (some of which may need more research) on consumer behavior:

  • What incidence/link between distribution systems, shopping frequency and waste?
  • Is there an incidence of the value given to food (cultural, social…) on waste? For instance what for organic products?
  • The impact of the economic crisis reducing waste at consumer level, see Baptista et al 2012, chapter 3; could help analyze the relation between value and waste.

There is also a need to better strengthen the hierarchy of causes, linking it to more systemic approach, which would facilitate the design of recommendations.

In the analysis of causes, and also in relation to sustainable food systems, more could be said about social issues, including working conditions and types of relations. Resistance to the system of Plastic Food container (V0 p 43) is a very good example of how as a contributor said “FLW are build in the system”. Chapter 2 very well explains how a bruise of a fruit at harvesting can, later in the chain cause the loss of the fruit, or even of more fruits. The report could consider how working conditions, types of contracts all along the chain can increase or reduce risks of losses. Yvan Sagnet (2012) describing tomato harvesting, well shows how informal work, paid per box, with workers depending from an external chief, with no interest nor responsibility in the quality of the harvested product, leads to losses. And the link it has with low food prices.

About the definition. Is fish discarded at sea considered and counted as post harvest losses or does the counting begin after landing?

Also about the definition, but in fact broader is the question of edible/inedible mentioned by some contributors. I can understand that, for statistical purposes, it could be necessary to use the definition of a country or group of countries. But it raises some major questions. As some products which are considered inedible are in fact exported to countries where they are considered edible and eaten it could to an actual increase. It is especially the case for meat; most of the parts considered non edible in one country, or simply not preferred, are exported (Hsin Huang 2012). A second point is that it seems that the definition of non edible seems to expand, at least in some countries. Most of the pieces of meat were eaten, including offal. In some countries even bread crust could now be considered  as inedible. From a sustainable food systems perspective there should be a distinction between edible/non edible and preferred/not preferred. Even if not accounted as waste in a statistical definition, not to eat something edible because it is not preferred is a waste of resources. 

References :

-  Andrea Segrè Vivere a spreco zero. Marsilio editore 2013.

-  Baptista, Pedro, Campos, Inês, Pires, Iva, Vaz, Sofia G. (2012) Do Campo ao Garfo.

Desperdício alimentar em Portugal.

-  Yvan Sagnet. 2012. Ama il tuo sogno, vita e rivolta nella terra dell’oro rosso. Fandango libri.

Alexandre Meybeck  

FAO/UNEP sustainable food systems programme

Save Food team FAO, Italy

Please find attached a response from the Save Food team.



Submission by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food in Norway to the open e-consultation on the zero Draft on Food losses and waste in the context of sustainable food systems

We appreciate the opportunity to provide inputs to the zero draft. In general, the draft is a solid and valuable document in the important work of reducing food losses and waste.

We would like to raise the attention of the Norwegian, Scandinavian and other European work on food waste, which might include some new and useful information for the further elaboration of the report, sometimes also information that differ from what is already in the draft.

We would especially like to inform the HLPE about some information from the Norwegian “ForMat” project. The project is an industry initiated collaboration between producers, retailers, research institutions, environmental organisations and the government. The last report from the project was recently released in an English translation, we have therefore chosen to enclose it here.

We would also like to raise the attention to the ongoing work on food waste by the Nordic Council of Ministers. Most of these reports are written in English (Marthinsen et al 2012, Stenmarck et al 2011, Sundt et al 2011).

Comments to the draft:

P. 10, l. 20-23: “Developing global protocols for the measurement of FLW is highly complex, having to account for a large number of variables, often different from country to country. (…) there is no recorded data on food waste at the consumer end in the developed countries.” Although the two sentences here probably are inter-linked, the last sentence may seem slightly misleading, as there are recorded data on food waste at the consumer end in quite a few developed countries as the Scandinavian countries, UK etc. as mentioned at p. 82, l. 1-4 and in our comment on this page below.

P. 13, l. 32-35: “There is not much evidence on the reduction of FLW at national level, partly because of lack of consistent methodologies and data to assess, partly because most of national policies are recent. Some countries (UK, South Korea, Japan) have made the reduction of FLW a high priority topic in early 21th century and some first evidence of their impacts is available”. The Scandinavian countries have also made the reduction of FLW a high priority topic in early 21th century. In Norway the first evidence of their impacts is available (see Hanssen and Møller 2013: pp 1-4).

P. 17, l. 4-8: “Some detailed studies give more precise and accurate perspectives on specific parts of food supply chains. (…) A detailed and comprehensive overview of different sectors (excluding primary production) has been gathered for UK”. The Scandinavian countries at least (and, we believe, also other countries?) have also gathered detailed and comprehensive overviews of different sectors (mostly excluding primary production although an interesting study is also made here, see Franke et. al. 2013), see for instance Hanssen and Møller 2013.

P. 20, l. 20-22: “All the world effort for slowing the pace of climate change is based on international commitments regarding the reduction in the emission of gases and desintensification of the use of natural resources. The reduction of losses and waste could be a shortcut to achieve these goals.” An important point that could be stressed more throughout the document.

P. 29, l. 23-35: The reference solely to the United States and Stuart 2009, can be broadened with reference to the Norway and Sweden in Franke et. al. 2013: pp 22-29, which shows losses of 10-30% of main vegetables, potatoes and berries in Norway and Sweden of the same reasons, although the wastage mostly appears at the storage stage (for example are only 1,6% of the Norwegian carrots left on the field, while 25% of the wastage appears at the storage stage).

P. 35, l. 33-44: (On Food safety aspects). Although the subject is returned to later in the draft, the importance of this subject could be stressed more also here. The references and examples can be broadened with Hanssen and Møller 2013 and Norway.

P. 37, l. 8-9: “In the US alone, it was estimated that the in-store food losses was 10% of the total food supply.” In Norway it was estimated that 18% of the total wasted food was from the retailers (Hanssen 2011).

P. 39, l. 21-23: “According to a survey conducted in 2009 by WRAP (2009) for households in UK 41% of the waste occurs because the meals were cooked or served too much and 54% of waste is because the food was not used in time.” As earlier mentioned, the Norwegian ForMat project analyse trends in the development of food waste over time. Since 2009/2010 ForMat has analysed food waste from producers, wholesalers, retailers and consumers. The reason most commonly given by consumers for throwing away food was that it was “past its expiry date”, which shows that many consumers do not relate rationally to the date stamp. Firstly, the expiry date is by far the most important reason for disposing of yoghurt and sour cream, which are products marked with “best before” and which last well beyond the date stamped on them. Secondly, the expiry date is given as an important reason for both fresh bakery products and fresh fruit and vegetables, which are products without a date stamp in most cases. The results reveal not only the effects of poor planning and shopping routines but also a narrow focusing on the date stamp in determining whether a product can be eaten or not (Hanssen and Møller 2013: p 16).

P. 39, l. 26 (On methodological problems in measuring waste of fruits, vegetables and cereals from consumers). An important methodological problem in measuring waste in general from consumers, is that consumers are underestimating their own waste in consumer surveys which normally are answers to questionnaires. Sample analyses is a more reliable method, although a much more costly one. A combination of the two methods is probably more realistic. See for instance ForMat 2012: p 12.

P. 40, l. 5-9: “Households with fewer residents waste more because the parts purchased and prepared are typically larger than the consumption capacity (...). It turns out also that there is larger waste in households with greater presence of adolescents and young people”. The ForMat project slows slightly different results in Norway. Young adults (19-26) and young families (26-39) waste most (ForMat 2012: p 13).

P. 40, l. 18-28. (On three different expiration dates in the United States). A similar disposal is taking place in Norway even if we don’t have three different expiration dates. See our previous comment on p. 39, l. 21-23. (Norway apply the EU-rules on date labeling: The 'Use by'-date is used on products which used after this date could put your health at risk. The 'Best before' date is more about quality than safety, so when that date runs out it doesn't mean that the food will be harmful, but it might begin to lose its flavour and texture).

P. 50, l. 7 - p. 51, l. 7 (On action towards consumers). This paragraph can be extended with multiple actions both going on and being possible to start towards consumers, many of them are now only to be found in the appendix (p. 78 l. 24 - p. 79 l. 10) or in boxes scattered elsewhere (Box 9 p. 52 and box 13 p. 58 which also can be broadened with other (traditional) cultural practices (also in the West) of saving food). Alternatively the appendix can be referred to here, or a similar paragraph as the following paragraph on campaigns against food waste in Southeast Asia should be made for Europe. At least should Norway get its’ own box here, certainly with these two examples: 1) In Norway  two leading producers of meat and dairy products have changed their labelling of many of these products from “Use by” to “Best before” to reduce food waste. 2) A Norwegian company has made an indicator it claims will reduce food waste. The indicator takes into account the temperature all the way from producer to consumer, and therefore shows a more appropriate durability than the traditional date labelling. The indicator shows how many days the food product retains its quality depending on the storage temperature.

P. 54, l. 45 – p. 55, l. 22 (On food losses and waste reduction: winners and losers). This paragraph seems not to be consistent with the last concluding paragraph (p. 65, l. 14-22).

P. 55, l. 23 Box 11 Saving money through waste reduction: This box might be better placed under paragraph 3.9 Reducing FLW: towards more sustainable food systems (p. 62, l. 1-24. See also comment on that page.

P. 59, l. 12-13: “changes in legislation and business behaviour towards more sustainable food production and consumption will be necessary to reduce waste from its current high levels.” We don’t agree that changes in legislation will be necessary to reduce waste from its current high levels. It might be necessary, but for instance as shown in our comment on p. 39, l. 21-23, it is the customers’ interpretation of the date labelling which is producing waste, rather than the date labelling legislation in itself. As for p. 57 l. 7-10: “In order to give incentives and facilitate the donations President Clinton proclaimed the Bill of Good Samaritan in 1996, that exempts donor companies from taxes and penal responsibilities. This act was a watershed and boosted the movement of Food Banks. After that many other countries have followed suit”, the Norwegian government in cooperation with the food retailers and humanitarian organizations, decided it was no need for a Good Samaritan law in order to start a food bank in Norway. Now a food bank is started and operating without such a law.

P. 61, l. 5 Box 15 Campaigns against food waste in China, South-Korea and Japan: The delivery date extension experiment described in Japan might not necessarily reduce food waste, but move the food waste from the retailer to the consumer which is left with shorter expiration time.

P. 62, l. 1-24 in general, especially l. 6-7: “Some countries have started to define strategies and targets, most of these actions have not been assessed.” The Norwegian ForMat-project and its’ actions since 2009/10 are continually being assessed (Hanssen and Møller 2013: pp 1-4). As for the Courtauld Commitment in Box 16, the ForMat-project also reports on reduction of food waste and as for the box 11 Saving money through waste reduction (p. 55, l. 23 see own comment), the ForMat-project have also developed a simple calculation tool to assist companies in assessing what food wastage currently costs them in terms of lost revenue and waste management expenses. This paragraph in general can be broadened with more examples of this kind both from ForMat and other projects (like for instance Samma in Sweden). Some of it can preferably be included from the appendices.

P. 74, l. 1 – p. 82, l. 4. Appendices. In general, much of the information in the appendices can preferably be mentioned in the main text. See also our previous comments on p. 10, l. 20-23; p. 50, l. 7 - p. 51, l. 7 and p. 62, l. 1-24 and the comment below.

P. 82, l. 1-4. “In a growing number of developed countries data of post consumer level food waste are consistently measured to monitor trends, based on household waste analysis (e.g. Schneider, 2009; WRAP 2010, 2013; Van Westerhoven, 2010, 2013).” The ForMat-project can preferably be mentioned here (Hanssen and Møller 2013).


ForMat. 2012. Prevention of food waste - Presentation of the ForMat-project, (available at:http://www.nhomatogdrikke.no/getfile.php/ForMat/Engelsk%20presentasjon%20ForMat.pdf ).

Franke, U., Einarson, E., Andrésen, N., Svanes, E., Hartikainen, H. & Mogensen, L. 2013. Kartläggning av matsvinnet i primärproduktionen. TemaNord, Volume 581, 2013, Nordiska ministerrådet, (available at: http://www.norden.org/sv/publikationer/publikationer/2013-581 ).

Hanssen, O. & Schakenda, V. 2011. Nyttbart matavfall i Norge – status og utviklingstrekk 2010 - Rapport fra ForMat-prosjektet. OR, Volume 37.10, 2011, Østfoldforskning (available at: http://ostfoldforskning.no/uploads/dokumenter/publikasjoner/661.pdf ).

Hanssen, O. & Møller, H. 2013. Food Wastage in Norway 2013 – Status and Trends 2009-13. OR, Volume 32.13, 2013, Østfoldforskning (enclosed).

Marthinsen, J., Sundt, P., Kaysen, O. & Kirkevaag, K. 2012. Prevention of food waste in restaurants, hotels, canteens and catering. TemaNord, Volume 537, 2012, Nordic Council of Ministers, (available at: http://www.norden.org/sv/publikationer/publikationer/2012-537 ).

Stenmarck, Å., Hanssen, O., Silvennoinen, K., Katajajuuri, J. & Werge, M. 2011. Initiatives on prevention of food waste in the retail and wholesale trades. TemaNord, Volume 548, 2011, Nordic Council of Ministers, (available at: http://www.norden.org/sv/publikationer/publikationer/2011-548 ).

Sundt, P., Marthinsen, J., Syversen, F., Kaysen, O. & Kirkvaag, K. 2011. Nordic information campaign regarding food waste prevention - preliminary study. Nordic Council of Ministers/Mepex Consult AS. (Not publicised).


The role of nutritionists for better understanding of the nutritional waste of foods by consumers should be highlighted. It would be impossible to measure the waste of calories and other nutritional aspects of food being purchased and actually consumed by households without a clear measurement based on different food categories. In fact, representative/valid direct observation research methods are lacking from the international literature on food and nutritional waste. This would be the first step to assess the current levels of waste among households and opportunities for intervention. The research initiative being proposed by FAO and SESI to assess food and nutritional waste among households in Brazil may provide an important contribution for reliable domestic and international comparisons. Most of the studies found in the literature are estimates of waste, focus on specific geographical areas, and very few are current.  The document should stress opportunities for direct observation research methods or what methods are considered the most relevant by the committee. 

La Representación de la República Argentina ante la FAO, FIDA y PMA presenta sus saludos al Grupo de alto nivel de expertos en seguridad alimentaria y nutrición y tiene el agrado de remitir los comentarios sobre la primera versión (V0) del informe sobre "Las pérdidas y el desperdicio de alimentos".


Fernando Castro Verástegui Ministerio de Agricultura y Riego (MINAGRI), Peru


Saludamos el trabajo realizado por el “Panel de Expertos de Alto nivel sobre Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición” del Comité de Seguridad Alimentaria Mundial que ha elaborado el estudio preliminar “Las Perdidas y el Desperdicio de Alimentos en el Contexto de los Sistemas Alimentarios Sostenibles”, el mismo que reconoce la necesidad de reducir considerablemente las pérdidas de alimentos en cada una de las etapas de la cadena de suministro de alimentos para así alcanzar la seguridad alimentaria y nutricional de la población.


Fernando Castro Verástegui

Director de la Unidad de Política Sectorial

Ministerio de Agricultura y Riego del Perú


Nico van Belzen Netherlands

Thank you for the opportunity to comment. I would like to suggest amending or deleting Table 2 on p. 63, where 2-6% of yoghurt production and 85-90% of cheese production is reported to end up as a side stream.

The vast majority of yogurt contains 100% of the milk input. There is some strained yogurt produced where some aqueous phase is removed, but most of this is now produced using ultrafiltration or mechanical separation and the removed aqueous phase ("whey") is processed in the same way as cheese whey.

Regarding cheese, the image of cheese whey as an inconvenient byproduct is outdated. Whey and products manufactured from whey are now seen as very valuable products by the dairy sector. They are being used as ingredients in infant formulae, sports and fitness drinks and many other applications in human nutrition. Lactose is also used as pharmaceutical excipient. The value of whey is illustrated by the global trade in whey powder and non-liquid whey-based protein products (HS 0404), which grew by 6% to 1.5 million tons in 2012 (IDF World Dairy Situation Report 2013).

Excellent examples of cheese whey valorisation exist and their inclusion would enhance the document.

References (examples, not an exhaustive list)

Baieli MF, Urtasun N, Miranda MV, Cascone O, Wolman FJ. Bovine lactoferrin purification from whey using Yellow HE-4R as the chromatographic affinity ligand. J Sep Sci. 2013 Dec 23. doi: 10.1002/jssc.201301086. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 24376134.

Hurton BS. Whey Processing and Utilization. In: Bulletin of the IDF No. 308/1995. http://www.fil-idf.org/Public/PublicationsPage.php?ID=27121&text=308/1995&show=28514.

Jansen JMM, Krijger A (2003) Beyond butter, cheese and powder: non-traditional dairy products: facts, implications and challenges. http://www.prodzuivel.nl/index.asp?frame=http%3A//www.prodzuivel.nl/pz/productschap/publicaties/artikelen/oeso14-16april2003.htm

Magalhães KT, Pereira MA, Nicolau A, Dragone G, Domingues L, Teixeira JA, de Almeida Silva JB, Schwan RF. Production of fermented cheese whey-based beverage using kefir grains as starter culture: evaluation of morphological and microbial variations. Bioresour Technol. 2010 Nov;101(22):8843-50. doi:10.1016/j.biortech.2010.06.083. Epub 2010 Jul 8. PubMed PMID: 20619643.

Minhalma M, Magueijo V, Queiroz DP, de Pinho MN. Optimization of "Serpa" cheese whey nanofiltration for effluent minimization and by-products recovery. J Environ Manage. 2007 Jan;82(2):200-6. Epub 2006 Apr 17. PubMed PMID: 16616409.

Mollea C, Marmo L, Bosco F (2013). Valorisation of Cheese Whey, a By-Product from the Dairy Industry, Food Industry, Dr. Innocenzo Muzzalupo (Ed.), ISBN: 978-953-51-0911-2, InTech, DOI: 10.5772/53159. Available from: http://www.intechopen.com/books/food-industry/valorisation-of-cheese-whey-a-by-product-from-the-dairy-industry

Prazeres AR, Carvalho F, Rivas J. Cheese whey management: a review. J EnvironManage. 2012 Nov 15;110:48-68. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2012.05.018. Epub 2012 Jun 19. Review. PubMed PMID: 22721610.

Tamime AY, Robinson RK. Yoghurt: Science and Technology. Woodhead Publishing, 1999. http://books.google.be/books?id=e7PCh9APKYUC.

Bulletin of the IDF No. 470/2013 - The World Dairy Situation 2013. http://www.fil-idf.org/Public/ColumnsPage.php?ID=23077


Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the V0 version of the HLPE report Food Losses and Waste in the Context of Sustainable Food Systems. Our comments are related to fisheries.

In some types of fisheries there are problems with discards. This is a type of food waste that should be avoided. FAO has developed guidelines on this issue: International Guidelines on Bycatch Management and Reduction of Discards (adopted by the Committee on Fisheries at its 29th session in 2011): http://www.fao.org/docrep/015/ba0022t/ba0022t00.pdf. This issue ought to be included in the final report.

We would also like to underline the importance of quality standards throughout the production chain. As regards waste in fisheries, an important aspect relates to the handling of catches at an early stage. In order for the end-user product to remain food as long as possible, it is important to ensure quality standards also prior to industrial processing.

In order to proceed in this important field of study, it is important to develop harmonized methods for measuring food losses and food waste.

The Associated Country Women of the World appreciate the opportunity to contribute to the HLPE report.

Like others, we applaud the attention paid to women. But we call for specific measures to determine women’s needs and integrate them into policies. Organisations like ACWW, which have large networks of grassroots women’s groups, are well-placed to collect information in an inclusive way. Therefore NGOs such as ours would benefit from support in collecting such information, particularly in the remote areas where many of our members reside.

We would like to call attention in particular to the role of rural women, who are often neglected by funders and policymakers. For instance, the Network of Rural Women Producers – Trinidad & Tobago, one of our member societies, provides training in the processing of mango products, which helps to reduce spoilage. Especially in 2014, the International Year of Family Farming, the international community should be looking for examples of best practices from smallholder farmers, rural residents and grassroots organisations. These groups are at the core of ACWW’s work. Measures targeting these groups should be culturally appropriate and acceptable (in terms of both cost and technology).

ACWW promotes vegetable gardening through its “Grow locally, benefit globally” campaign. One of our findings from both this campaign (which has been deployed worldwide) and our agricultural projects (which are mainly implemented in developing countries) is that people have a strong incentive to reduce food losses and waste when they have a strong connection to the food they both produce and consume. Our project beneficiaries tend to appreciate having ownership over food production. For instance, one project seeking to improve the nutrition of pregnant women in rural Cameroon became more successful after switching from a vegetable distribution model to a “one child, one vegetable plot” strategy. Vegetable consumption increased, and thus waste was reduced, when women became producers rather than simply recipients. We therefore urge the scale-up of this type of small-scale food production.

Specifically for consumers in wealthy countries, simple measures to reduce food waste can be very effective. Under the heading “Why waste food”, ACWW has distributed recipes that make use of leftovers. While this cooperative and practical approach is effective for our members, a combination of strategies – economic incentives, peer pressure, etc. – may be most helpful for others. Thus a system for sharing best practices worldwide is urgently needed.

It would be helpful for the final report to include specific recommendations, broken down by target group. We would be particularly interested in the recommendations for NGOs, which are valuable intermediaries between project beneficiaries and policymakers.