Technical Platform on the Measurement and Reduction of Food Loss and Waste

Agenda 2030 and FAO methodology for SDG indicator 12.3.1a Food Loss Index

Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12 to “ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns”, includes Target 12.3 “by 2030, halve the per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer level, and reduce food losses along production and supply chains including post-harvest losses”. The Target has been divided into a Food Loss and a Food Waste component with separate indicators and mandates. Under its mandate, FAO has developed a methodology for measuring and monitoring progress with indicator SDG 12.3.1a Food Loss Index (FLI). The FLI covers losses occurring from harvest up to but excluding the retail stage. The index measures changes in losses over time and comparing them to the base year. This is important in monitoring trends in losses and therefore directing interventions where they will have most impact. Indicator SDG 12.3.1b Food Waste Index (FWI) which covers waste at the retail and consumption level is under the mandate of UNEP.


IFPRI Food Losses methodology

The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has developed a methodology that aims to improve the measurement of food losses across the value chain (i.e. farmers, intermediaries and processors). This approach not only measures the quantities of food lost, but importantly takes into consideration deterioration in quality, which entails economic losses. The objectives of the methodology are to: gauge the extent of food losses across a wide array of commodities in developing countries; measure both quantitative and qualitative economic losses; (determine the nodes where losses are more prevalent; and identify particular production processes during which losses occur.

Food Loss and Waste
Indicator SDG 12.3 Video Introduction

FAO developed a SDG 12.3.1 Food Loss Index (GFLI) monitoring Food Losses on a global level for a basket of key commodities in the food systems, including crops, livestock, and fisheries products. The index focuses on the supply stages of food chains and measures changes in percentage losses over time. The purpose of the index is to allow for policy makers to look at the positive and negative trends in food loss compared to a baseline year, in order to improve the food supply system efficiency against food losses.

The Global Initiative on FLW reduction has designed a case study method to specifically collect primary and empirical data on the causes of food losses in developing countries in selected food supply chains. The methodological sequence follows the 4-S approach: Screening, Sampling, Survey and Synthesis, concluding with the elaboration of a Final Report. The methodology is available as an e-learning course in the Resources page in English, French and Spanish.

Launched in 2013, the food loss and waste protocol and standard is a multi-stakeholder effort, convened by the World Resources Institute, to provide countries companies and other organizations guidance on practical and consistent quantification of food loss and waste. Core partners include FAO, UNEP, the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD), the Consumer Goods Forum, the European Union project FUSIONS, and Waste and Resources Action Programme.

Initiated in 2008, in collaboration with the Natural Resources Institute (NRI), the German Ministry of Food, and the European Union’s Joint Research Centre APHLIS is funded by the European Community. A model used by APHLIS is based on previous data to estimate losses. The calculator algorithm uses two datasets, the post-harvest loss profiles and seasonal production data. APHLIS is not intended to be a statistical approach, the downloadable loss calculator enables practitioners to change the default values to those that are specific to the situation of interest so that loss estimates can be obtained at a chosen geographical scale.

The German Federal Enterprise for International Cooperation (GIZ) developed a methodology to rapidly assess value chains, but does not intend to provide sufficient data for evidence-based policy. The tool helps identify loss hot spots that can be followed up by in-depth analyses. The toolset has been tested on the white rice value chain in Nigeria

Go to FAO Food Loss App | FLAPP Food Loss and Waste Database

SDG Indicators Data Portal - SDG 12.3.1

Food Loss Measurement Resources

Data & Tools
FAO Food Loss App (FLAPP)

By providing accessible information on food loss through video advisories, the FLAPP empowers farmers, companies, producer associations, and cooperatives...

Hybrid Event, 's-Hertogenbosch (Netherlands)

15th meeting of the EU Platform on Food losses and Food Waste

The EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste (FLW) was established in 2016, and bringing together EU institutions, experts from the EU countries,...