International conference to tackle food waste
Published:  02 November, 2012

Food companies should concentrate on finding solutions to the problem of waste in the supply chain in order to promote food safety and sustainability, the Dutch Ambassador to the UK has said ahead of an international conference on food waste.

The conference, entitled No Opportunity Wasted, is being held at the Dutch Embassy next week (7 November) in cooperation with the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation. It will see representatives from all sectors, including major retailers, consumers, farmers, manufacturers, suppliers and caterers contribute to a debate on how to reduce food waste from field-to-fork.

Speaking before the event, Laetitia van den Assum, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the United Kingdom, said: “Instead of discussing the problems, we should focus on the opportunities and solutions to the challenges lying ahead. We know that we have to increase global food production by 70% in the coming decades. We know we waste about 40% of all food produced. We know of all kinds of promising pilot programmes to reduce waste, or use it as a valuable resource. We must now take practical steps and convert these pilots into more economically viable business initiatives, and make them central to the sustainability strategy of businesses and governments.”

Organisers believe that solving the food waste problem will make a major contribution to global food security and securing tomorrow’s natural resources and hope that the conference will inform a White Paper of the European Commission planned for next year.

Speakers include European Commissioner Janez Potočnik, deputy director general of the European Commission Ladislav Miko, Professor Tim Lang, professor of food policy at City University, London, WWF senior political adviser Duncan Williamson, director general of the ministry of economic affairs, agriculture and innovation, Hans Hoogeveen, Vion’s director of public affiras Paul Jensen as well as respresentatives from Asda, Sodexo and WRAP.  

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