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Review article - Peer-reviewed, 2019

Food waste accounting methodologies: challenges, opportunities, and further advancements

Corrado, Sara; Secondi, Luca; Stenmarck, Asa; Sala, Serenella; Caldeira, Carla; Eriksson, Mattias; Hanssen, Ole Jorgen; Hauser, Hans-Eduard; van Holsteijn, Freija; Liu, Gang; Ostergren, Karin; Parry, Andrew


About one third of the food produced globally is wasted along the food chain, representing a burden for the environment and an inefficiency of the food system. Tackling food waste is a priority on the global political agenda to guarantee food security. Defining a methodology for food waste quantification is key to monitoring progress towards the achievement of reduction targets. This paper summarises the outcomes of a workshop on food waste accounting co-organised by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre and Directorate-General on Health and Food Safety with the aim of stimulating harmonisation of methodologies, identifying challenges, opportunities, and further advancement for food waste accounting. The paper presents methodological aspects, e.g. system boundaries, reliability of data, accounting of water flows, to ensure better support to food waste policy design and interventions. It addresses all the actors of the food supply chain, governments, and research institutions.


Food waste; Food loss; Accounting methodology; Systemic approach; Sustainable development goal 12.3; Policy support

Published in

Global Food Security
2019, Volume: 20, pages: 93-100

    Associated SLU-program

    Food Waste

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG2 Zero hunger
    SDG12 Responsible consumption and production

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Environmental Sciences

    Publication identifier


    Permanent link to this page (URI)