Friday, December 1, 2023 | 03:11 WIB

Indonesia’s rising Food Waste Society’s disaster or blessing?


Jakarta, IO – Food waste is a Responsible Consumption and Production issue for SDG 12. Thus, alternative solutions to food waste in food production and food leftovers in food consumption along food supply chain systems should be a worldwide priority. 

“Food waste” per se is defined by no regulations in Indonesia. For the FAO, “food waste” means the quantity of excess material left over from food manufacturing as well as leftovers after meals; these are tied to seller and consumer actions. (Parfit, 2010). 

The food supply chain is a series of farming enterprises, post-harvest activities, storage, processing, all the way to industrial and household end-customers. At each stage there is food loss on the production side. 

On the other hand, the food waste supply chain for end-,consumers includes food processed production chain points, food storage in accordance with health and food safety standards and food disposal, influenced by religious, cultural and hygiene rules. 

The World Bank Atlas of Sustainable Development Goals 2023 database illustrates this: https:// sdgatlas/goal-12-responsible-consumption-and-production#c1, Sustainable consumption is called for in SDG 12, stipulating that edible resources should not be thrown away, but rather recycled and handled in a productive manner. If neither production nor consumption is sustainable, then economic output will be curtailed, which will lead to an increase in pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as a loss of biodiversity. 

In point of fact, SDG 12 is the only one of the Sustainable Development Goals to have an indicator set on a framework that is expressly aimed at private sector enterprises. This indicator can be found in SDG target 12.6.1. This indicator measures the number of businesses that describe their progress towards reaching environmental, social, and governance-related objectives, by including information on sustainability in their annual reports. 

Because a significant portion of the food that is produced is never really eaten, one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) goal 12.3 urgently calls on citizens all around the globe to reduce food waste. Manufacturing and storage conditions account for the majority of food waste in nations with lower standards of living. The consumer is responsible for a major portion of waste in both North America and Europe. This means that families in both regions end up throwing out a large quantity of the food that they have purchased. 

The situation existing in Indonesia is shown in Figure 1. If we could cut down on the amount of food that is never eaten but discarded, we would require fewer natural resources for production, storage, and transportation, which would put society on a road towards greater sustainability. 

Agri-food Supply Chain 

The following conceptions of loss and waste have been used for reasons of measurability and consistency with other statistical definitions, in order to comply with the FAO operational framework (FAO, 2018), defined as follows: 

1. Food losses include all of the crop and livestock human-edible commodity quantities that, directly or indirectly, completely exit the post-harvest/slaughter, production/ supply chain by being discarded, incinerated or in any other way, and do not re-enter in any other utilization (such as animal feed, industrial use, etc.), up to, and excluding, the retail level. Food losses are an important aspect of the global food system. Therefore, any losses that occur during storage, transit, and processing, including those that occur to imported amounts, are taken into account. Losses include the commodity as a whole with its non-edible parts. 

2. Food waste occurs from the retail to the final consumption/demand stage. 

Gustavsson et al (2011) of the Swedish Institute for Food and Biotechnology (SIK) conducted research on behalf of the FAO, to compare high/medium income nations with low-income countries, regarding global food losses. This investigation featured a breakdown of food losses and waste on a worldwide scale, as well as the supply chain for several commodity food categories, such as cereals, fruit and vegetables, roots and tubers, oilseeds and pulses, meat, fish and shellfish and dairy products. 

The assessment of food losses in Europe (including Russia), North America, Oceania, industrialized Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, included such food items as fruits, vegetables, roots, tubers, meat, fish and seafood. Despite losses in fruits, vegetables, oilseeds, pulses, meat, fish and seafood in West and Central Asia, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and Latin America, the losses were still significant. 

It is worth noting that cereals, roots, tubers, fruits, vegetables, fish and seafood are essential items for consumption in Europe (including Russia), North America, Oceania, and industrialized Asia. Surprisingly, the percentage of grains, fruits and vegetables wasted in these regions is similar to other areas. 


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