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Food makers sign up to voluntary pact to halve food waste

Major food manufacturers have joined Woolworths and Coles in signing the Australian Food Pact, a voluntary agreement that aims to halve food waste by 2030.

Launched yesterday, the pact counts Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) member companies Goodman Fielder, Mars Australia, Simplot Australia, McCain and Mondelez Australia among its signatories. It spans from “farm to fork”, covering primary production, processing, manufacturing, wholesale, retail, hospitality, institutions and households.

The pact brings organisations from across the nation’s food supply chain together in what AFGC CEO Tanya Barden describes as a collaborative, pre-competitive effort to address the problem it says results in an estimated $36 billion in economic losses annually. 

The AFGC is a supporting partner of Stop Food Waste Australia (SFWA), a federally funded organisation set up to bring together federal, state and local governments as well as the food industry and charities to drive collaboration on reducing food waste.

SFWA CEO Dr Steven Lapidge described food waste as “a local, national and global challenge”.

“Australians waste 7.6 million tonnes of food each year, equivalent to more than 300kg of wasted food per person per year,” he said.

“The Australian Food Pact represents a major step forward in our bid to reduce food waste.”

SFWA will work with signatories on initiatives that may include sustainable product design and sourcing, supply chain optimisation, projects to influence business and consumer behaviours and increasing opportunities for food rescue and donation.

Barden added that the pact reflects a determination across the entire supply chain to reduce waste – and in the process, make the nation’s food production and retail systems even more innovative and sustainable.

  • Main image: @EdChechine via Twenty20.

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