SAVE FOOD: Initiative mondiale de réduction des pertes et du gaspillage alimentaires

Food Recovery and Redistribution Advocated by the Committee on World Food Security, FAO multi-disciplinary Team

28 May 2015

The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) recently addressed Food Loss and Waste (FLW) prevention and reduction in order to promote more equitable and sustainable food systems. This address was based on a report by its High Level Panel of Experts (HLPE, 2014). In October 2014, the CFS’s policy roundtable recommended an enabling environment facilitated through the “food use-not-waste” hierarchy (i.e. the prevention, recovery and redistribution of safe and nutritious food to people).

The FAO works to prevent food waste through a multi-disciplinary team that is currently developing a knowledge tool on food recovery and redistribution. This team has created a comprehensive definition for ‘recovery and redistribution for safe and nutritious food for human consumption’.

The knowledge tool focuses on policy and operational developments that include food safety and quality, human nutrition and the social dimension along with natural resources management and food systems governance.  

Recovery of safe and nutritious food for human consumption is to receive, with or without payment, food(processed, semi-processed or raw) which would otherwise be discarded or wasted from the agricultural, livestock and fisheries supply chains of the food system. Redistribution of safe and nutritious food for human consumption is to store or process and then distribute the received food pursuant to appropriate safety, quality and regulatory frameworks directly or through intermediaries, and with or without payment, to those having access to it for food intake.


Current forms of recovery and redistribution of safe and nutritious food involves a huge variety of stakeholders in a diverse mix of initiatives, such as: food banks (warehouse, direct service, virtual, mixed form), gleaning networks, social supermarkets/community shops, food pantries, soup kitchens, community/charitable programmes, shelters, mixed form of social protection programmes that provides food, directly or indirectly, among other services.

The Global Initiative on Food Loss and Waste Reduction (also called SAVE FOOD) participated in the 2015 annual Food Bank Leadership Institute (FBLI) where seventy-five food bank leaders from 35 countries, along with private sector participants, World Food Programme and thought leaders gathered in order to share knowledge and ideas on ways to recover and redistribute more food to more people in need.  

Further resources: