On 6 December Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis, in charge of Health and Food Safety, addressed the members of the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste at its 5th meeting where progress made in EU actions to fight food waste was discussed.
Ahead of the meeting, Commissioner Andriukaitis said: "I am delighted to join you today as we take stock of the progress we have made towards the Sustainable Development Goals and the EU's commitment to halve food waste by 2030.
With the support of this Platform, the EU has made significant headway since 2016, implementing a number of food waste prevention actions laid down in the Circular Economy Action Plan. And while we should be proud of this progress, the best – I believe - is yet to come. […]
Thanks to the impetus and work of this Platform, we have made important progress to facilitate food donation and valorise food that is safe, but unmarketable for humans, as animal feed. The EU guidelines adopted in these respective fields provide much needed clarity.
Firstly, they will help redistribute food to those in need, addressing food poverty. Secondly, they will generate new, safe feed materials for animal nutrition.
Taking this forward, we are now pursuing, together with Platform members, a 3-year pilot project to support spread and uptake of the EU food donation guidelines.”
The Commissioner concluded his speech with a recommendation: “Christmas time is almost here. Time of cooking and spending time with our beloved ones around the table. For many of us it is the time of joy and maybe even that of excess. But not all of us will be so fortunate. Many people around our continent will struggle. You, above all, in the regions, cities, know this well as you are the closest to those in need. Can we therefore afford throwing away food? Morally, ethically & economically? I think we all know the answer.
18 days left until Christmas and I call on us all, gathered here in this room, to make a little sustainable commitment goal of ours this year: zero food waste from our tables! Zero food waste this year! Can we all commit to it?
I say: Yes, we can.
'Wasteless' Christmas to you all!”.
The Platform brings together both public and private interests in order to foster cooperation amongst all key players in the food value chain and help accelerate the EU's progress towards the global Sustainable Development Goal of halving food waste by 2030. Since its launch in 2016, the members of the Platform have supported the Commission in developing harmonised methodology for quantifying food waste, contributed to the development of EU guidelines on food donation and on the safe use of former foodstuffs as animal feed. It is currently helping to develop technical guidance to foster more consistent use of “best before” and “use by” dates by industry and control authorities. Focussed on supporting members in taking effective action to prevent food waste, the afternoon sessions will be dedicated to sharing learning from EU research and innovation programmes as well as related funding opportunities.
Read Commissioner Andriukaitis’ full speech here.