Food waste, in large part due to consumers not eating purchased products, is a bigger problem than previously thought. Halving would help remove about a quarter of total greenhouse gas emissions from the global food system.
A study by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research*, published in Nature Food, found that global emissions from food waste totaled 9.3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent in 2017 – more than double previous estimates. The results of the study make it clear that the food industry is unjustly pilloried in the climate debate. If food waste were a country, it would be the third largest GHG emitter after the US and China.
*Cradle-to-grave emissions from food loss and waste represent half of total greenhouse gasemissions from food systems
Food Surplus and Its Climate Burdens
The Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research