The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) united a group of 14 major retailers and manufacturers this week into a new coalition that aims to fight food waste, cutting global food loss in half per capita at both the retailer and consumer levels.
A third of all food produced worldwide never gets consumed — about 1.3 billion metric tons in all, according to the CGF. “That represents an economic cost to the global economy of $940 billion,” the industry network said. “Food waste is also responsible for adding 3.3 billion metric tons of greenhouse gases into the planet’s atmosphere annually.”
In response, the CGF launched the Coalition of Action on Food Waste, which is led by CEOs. The coalition asks participants to make several commitments to waste reduction: reporting their data by 2021, agreeing to scale up the Champions 12.3’s 10x20x30 Initiative, and addressing food loss at the post-harvest level by engaging with stakeholders to develop effective strategies.
The multi-stakeholder organization Champions 12.3 is a longtime CGF partner that is working to reach the third target of UN Sustainable Development Goal 12, the network explained. Goal 12, ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns, includes the target to halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels, and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses, by 2030.
Founding members of the coalition are Ahold Delhaize, Barilla, Bel Group, General Mills, Kellogg Company, Majid Al Futtaim, McCain Foods, Merck Animal Health, Metro AG, Migros Ticaret, Nestlé, Sainsbury, Tesco, and Walmart, CGF said.
“Food loss is a serious global problem and it can only be effectively addressed through committed collective action,” said Ignacio Gavilan, director of environmental sustainability at the CGF.
The CGF said that their network includes the CEOs and senior management of 400 retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and other stakeholders across 70 countries, representing $4.5 trillion. Previously the network launched initiatives calling for increased supply chain sustainability and standardized date labeling.
The new coalition builds on the CGF’s Food Waste Resolution from 2018, a voluntary commitment by members “to take steps to prevent and reduce food loss and waste within their own retail and manufacturing operations.” In addition, the CGF said that the coalition will be creating regional working groups to encourage implementation at the local level and engage key stakeholders.