Print publication date:
19 Oct 2011
Print ISBN: 978-1-84973-253-6
An estimated 50% of the food produced worldwide is wasted. If the entire world had the same voracious appetite as Europeans, it would take three planets to produce the amount demanded.
In Britain, 18 million tonnes (14 billion pounds worth) of perfectly edible household food is thrown away every year. Apart from the waste, overeating is becoming a serious public health issue in many countries. According to a U.S. study, Western countries are consuming an average daily surplus of 1400 calories per person.
This easy to read manual on overproduction and overconsumption in contemporary society highlights some alarming global data. It discusses the origins and causes of food waste and its correlation with climate change, agriculture, population growth, and the need for a more ethical, ecological society. The complexity of the waste dynamic processes imposes a dire need to reconsider economic relationships and social values in the light of sustainability and eco-efficiency.
After a foreword by Vandana Shiva , the first two chapters describe the current imbalanced global food market. The book then goes on to present projects from around the world that are aimed at finding practical and efficient solutions to food waste. Particular emphasis is placed on Last Minute Market. This initiative links shops and producers with unsold food to people, and charities, in need. Originated at the University of Bologna Faculty of Agriculture, the project offers economic, environmental and social benefits. Alongside other European initiatives, it has contributed to a greener economy and a more sustainable world. Based on the data, and on the initiatives presented, the conclusion is devoted to the idea of a "new intelligent ecology".