Table member Tom Quested has co-authored this report for the United Nations Environment Programme. The report presents up-to-date and comprehensive estimates of food waste around the world, based on the collation of a large number of national estimates of food waste. It also presents a methodology for countries to measure food waste consistently. The report focuses on waste from households, food service and retail.
The report finds that food waste from households, retailers and the food-service sector was an estimated 931 million tonnes in 2019, i.e. 17% of total food available to consumers. Of this, 61% was from households, 26% from food service and 13% from retail.
The report also assesses coverage of food-waste data around the world. For retail and the food service sector, data was concentrated in high-income countries. For households, more data for middle-income countries was found than expected. The level of household food waste in middle-income countries was found to be similar to high-income countries - consequently, the global estimate of food waste is higher than previous estimates.