Less food waste could bring lower EU food prices and decrease greenhouse gas emissions, says new JRC report
By: Berta Redondo
From: Europatat (European Potato Trade Association)
According to the latest report published by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre, households in the EU could save up to 220-720 euros on average every year.
The study entitled Assessing the economic, social and environmental impacts of food waste reduction targets – A model-based analysis, analysed the potential impacts of cutting EU food waste by 2030 by using the global economy-wide model called MAGNET (Modular Applied GeNeral Equilibrium Tool). In addition, environmental benefits linked to food waste reduction have been assessed with tools developed for the Consumption Footprint indicator.
In 2020 in the EU, nearly 59 million tonnes of food went to waste. That is 131 kg wasted food per each of us living in the European Union or roughly 10% of all food supplied to restaurants, food services, retail and households. Scientists of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) estimated that food waste accounts for about 16% of total greenhouse gas emissions from the EU food system.
JRC’s scientist analysed the impact of three reduction scenarios, with decreases of around 12%, 23% and 41% in EU food waste, involving different level of food waste cuts across the supply chain. In addition to the money saved by households annually, wasting less food could help to mitigate food prices, says the report. JRC report estimates that the price of vegetables could decrease by up to 4%, while fruit prices could come down by 2%. Furthermore, it estimated that cutting food waste could lead to a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of up to 108 million tonnes, depending on the scenario considered.