Thursday, March 19, 2020

Zero Hunger?

Food, no doubt, has always been one of the vitals for the population to survive. And one of the solutions is to tackle the menace of food waste. An alarming 1.3 billion tonnes of food produced globally is wasted. According to Food and Agricultural Organization, every year one-third of the food produced across the globe goes to waste. The staggering amount is a huge concern for humanity, especially when seen alongside the fact that an equally staggering 820 million go hungry every day. Why does this happen? If one were to trace the origin of the problem of food loss and food waste, we have to start from the process of food production followed by distribution and storage and finally consumption by consumers because it is an occurrence at every stage of this cyclical process.

We produce more than we need. And the same exerts tremendous pressure on the resources of the planet. Farming requires vast amounts of land and is a water-intensive activity. When food produces with such resources goes to waste, it is a waste of these resources. In India and elsewhere, most of this wasted food ends up in landfills that produce methane over prolonged periods, which is 21 times more harmful than CO2. Shocking is the fact that if food waste was seen as a country, then it would be the third largest contributor to green house gas emissions after United States and China.

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