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SAVE FOOD: Global Initiative on Food Loss and Waste Reduction

Support to African Union in the development of policies and strategies for country-specific plans to reduce postharvest food losses

Based upon the Malabo Declaration, the African Union has developed the Implementation Strategy and Roadmap, with strategic actions and milestones from 2015-2025. To facilitate the process, FAO and African Union co-organized a high level regional consultation in October 2014 to inform the development of a continental food loss reduction strategy. Consequently, Malabo Strategic Action Area 1 (SAA1) targets 'Support to post-harvest management', with the aim by 2025 of establishing effective post-harvest loss (PHL) reduction systems on the continent.

However, the rapid evolution of global agri-food systems requires new strategies and approaches to reduce food losses as well as address a variety of inter-related drivers such as: a) global market integration; b) increasing influence of the private sector; c) urbanization; and d) 'lengthening' of food supply chains from rural to urban areas. In view of these changes, intervention strategies need to focus on systematic improvements to the efficiency and sustainability of the entire supply chains, with clear roles for both the public and private sectors.

The African Union and its institutions will require support and capacity development to address the issue of food loss reduction in the context of today's dynamic and fast changing agri-food systems if the Malabo targets are to be met and links established to emerging knowledge platforms such as the G20 Technical Platform on Food Loss and Waste (FLW). As outlined above there is a need for improving the capacity of the African Union and its institutions in developing and implementing solutions to food loss and waste at various levels, from policy, to improved market linkages, to technologies and solutions in food value chains. This project will contribute towards this objective through the following key results:

  1. Stronger coordination of food loss reduction initiatives on the continent and improved alignment to the Malabo Roadmap.
  2. Improved capacity of AU member countries in the design and implementation of food loss reduction policies, strategies and programmes.
  3. Lesson learning and dissemination of good practices and success stories on the continent.
  4. Strengthened capacity of the G20 Technical Platform on Food Losses and Waste.

The overall objective of the project is to contribute to food and nutrition security by reducing quantitative and qualitative food losses and improving the efficiency of smallholder food supply chains. Direct beneficiaries are stakeholders in the food supply chain, with a special focus on rural women involved in agriculture and fisheries, agro-processing and marketing. Other beneficiaries are local organizations and national institutions and other value chain actors.

The project is currently being implemented in eleven African countries; Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Namibia, Rwanda, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe. In Kenya, the project focuses on the maize sector. An inventory of low cost technologies for aflatoxin control is being assembled and this will be integrated into a good practices manual aimed at aflatoxin control and targeting all actors in the maize value chain. An awareness raising campaign including posters, flyers and radio messages has also been launched.

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