Food security is a global priority. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the number of people facing chronic food deprivation reached 828 million in 2021, while more than one third of the world’s current food production is wasted or lost annually.
The pressure on the globe’s food value chains is only building. By 2050, the world population is projected to reach 9.77 billion. Solving the problem of food loss and waste (FLW) can significantly improve food security worldwide and will bring us strides closer to the UN Sustainable Development Goal to end hunger.
In this paper, we first aim to clarify the concept of FLW, because the setting of clear definitions and measurement approaches are key parts of the solution. We then talk about FLW at both a global and regional level, and examine the efforts of governments in the GCC to address the problem, while also highlighting their successes, and putting forward further suggestions.
In 2015, 150 governments (including all six GCC governments) committed to the SDG framework, which includes a commitment to halving per capita global food loss and waste by 2030
This report importantly lays out the different definitions of food loss and waste, as well as measurement paradigms. It also details how the problem grew as the world moved from an era of preservation to one of plenty.
We then look at the current state of food loss and waste around the world, before focusing on the role of governments, and the state of play in the GCC, including the particular challenges the region faces.
Finally, we recommend the below five key steps that GCC governments can take to tackle the issue: