Technical Platform on the Measurement and Reduction of Food Loss and Waste
The observance of the First International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste (IDAFLW) on 29 September 2020 will make a clear call to...
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc globally, generating significant challenges that could result in risks to food security and nutrition in many countries. Countries...
The Permanent Mission of Chile to the United Nations, the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations and the Food and Agriculture Organization of...
On July 2nd a FAO Insights Webinar on Reducing Food Loss and Waste during COVID-19 and Beyond was held. The succesful session, participated by several hundreds of...

Food loss and waste reduction, measurement and policy

Food loss and waste reduction should be seen as a means toward achieving other objectives, including improving food security and nutrition, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, lowering pressure on water and land resources and can increase productivity and economic growth. 

The formulation of effective policies toward food loss and waste reduction requires comprehensive information as to how much and where – both geographically and along the supply chain – various foods are lost or wasted. FAO’s work on measurement and support to countries to take action to reduce food loss and waste is critical to tracking progress made by countries.

Food loss is the decrease in the quantity or quality of food resulting from decisions and actions by food suppliers in the chain, excluding retailers, food service providers and consumers (SOFA, 2019).

Food waste refers to the decrease in the quantity or quality of food resulting from decisions and actions by retailers, food service providers and consumers (SOFA, 2019).


The Food Loss and Waste database is the largest online collection of data on both food loss and food waste and their causes reported throughout the literature. The database contains data and information from openly accessible reports and studies measuring food loss and waste across food products, stages of the value chain, and geographical areas.

Access the database


As a member of the Community of Practice on food loss and waste reduction you will be able to access the Forum, participate in online discussions, get in touch with other practitioners, share and request relevant and updated information, contribute to  building up a worldwide community aimed at reducing food losses and achieving food security.

Registration  Forum

 Food that never gets eaten also represents a waste of resources, such as land, water, energy, soil, seeds and other inputs used in its production, increasing green gas emissions in vain.

Food is lost or wasted throughout the supply chain from initial agricultural production all the way to final household consumption.


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