Urban Food Agenda

Milan, Nairobi and Kigali meet to achieve sustainable urban food systems


With FAO's support, the 3 Cities are collaborating in a cooperation project to exchange knowledge and experiences on food waste reduction. 

Food management all along the value chain, from cultivation to food waste disposal, is central to safeguard food security and respond to environment-related concerns.

In 2019, FAO has launched the Framework for the Urban Food Agenda which calls for a multisector, multi-stakeholder and integrated approach to eliminate famine, food insecurity and malnutrition. By leveraging local governments action, the Framework aims to develop more inclusive, efficient and sustainable food systems. 

In line with the Agenda, the ProjectExchange of knowledge and experiences between Milan Municipality (Italy), Nairobi City County (Kenya) and Kigali (Rwanda) for the design of an action plan related to food waste reduction and management” has been developed, with FAO’s support and the coordination of ACRA, a Milan-based NGO.

The City of Milan, promoter of the first international pact between cities to develop sustainable urban food policies, the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact, is very active in exploring new solutions to fight the various forms of food waste, also through public-private partnerships. At the same time, Nairobi and Kigali consider a better management of food waste as a key strategy to reduce hunger and poverty in their contexts.

The project showcases the wealth of experience that the Municipality of Milan has accumulated in food waste management, and provides a unique opportunity for mutual exchanges and learning by the three cities. This exchange has been facilitated by ACRA, a prominent actor in knowledge sharing between cities on effective food waste management.

One of the main results of the project has been the establishment of an on-line training platform to share experiences, promptly adapted after the COVID-19 pandemic, that has involved technical and institutional representatives from the City of Milan, alongside city officers and stakeholders from Kigali and Nairobi that have contributed to the reduction and improved management of food waste.

The first phase of e-learning has just concluded, and it has been a unique occasion to get to know the skills and practices developed by the City of Milan in the prevention, management and reduction of food waste. The participants have widened their knowledge in urban food waste management for the participative design of action plans aimed at benefiting their cities.

Thanks to the live sessions organized on the 1st and the 2nd of December 2020, the participants had the possibility to interact with stakeholders from Milan and discuss what they have seen in the on-line training. The live session saw the participation of FAO’s Ye Anping, Director of South-South and Triangular Cooperation division and Marcela Villareal, Director of the Partnership and UN Collaboration division.

Starting from this exchange of experiences, Nairobi, Kigali and Milan will dispose of additional tools to realize pilot projects on the prevention and management of food waste based on their specific needs. The interactions among participants and food policy experts will offer several occasions to exchange experiences and initiatives developed in different contexts.

“We are very interested in this opportunity to share knowledge and experiences related to food systems and policies, especially as concern food waste” – has said the Vice Mayor of Milan appointed for food policies, Anna Scavuzzo, in her opening remarks – “Cooperation and training are key elements of the transformation towards more sustainable cities. Thanks to FAO for this opportunity and to Kigali and Nairobi for their engagement in the implementation of sustainability strategies for urban food systems”.