Let’s Stop Food Waste in Europe!

About 88 million tonnes of food are wasted in Europe every year—an unsustainable scandal. We’re asking European citizens to take this email action to call for binding targets to halve EU food waste by 2030.

Food waste is not only a problem of great ethical significance but also the most glaring symptom of a warped, unsustainable food system that deprives food itself of its cultural, social and environmental value.

Slow Food recognizes the central role food in our lives, and thus regards food waste as unacceptable. The fight against it as a fundamental aspect of our philosophy, which takes shape not only in work with school cafeterias, workshops and adult education activities, but also in the organization of events such as World Disco Soup Day.

Slow Food is part of a massive EU-wide movement campaigning to halve food waste in Europe, led by This Is Rubbish. More than 50 organizations in 18 EU countries and 70,000 people (through Change.org and Global Citizen petitions) have come together to call for for binding targets to halve EU food waste by 2030, right across the supply chain from farm to fork, and also for a food waste hierarchy to prioritise feeding edible food waste to human consumption. The targets, if agreed, will come through amendments to the Waste Framework Directive as part of the EU’s new Circular Economy Package.

Following massive pressure from across Europe including from Slow Food, the campaign had a huge victory when European Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of targets to halve waste by 2030 from farm to fork and to review making these targets binding by 2020. However, these pledges are now being jeopardized by the European Council, which is keen to take a step back from the Parliament’s decision.

In mid-May negotiations will begin between the Parliament, the Commission and the Council to reach a final agreement about waste reduction. We need to build massive pressure on the Council to back the Parliament’s ambitious food waste targets.

This is why Slow Food is asking European citizens to make their voices heard and write directly to European environment ministers. Take action here.

Unity is strength. The fact has been demonstrated by the numerous Disco Soup events organized across Europe on World Disco Soup Day on April 29 last. From Romania to Denmark and from Spain to Bulgaria, Slow Food convivia got together to raise awareness about waste, share experiences and proposals and collect left-over or rejected food products from markets and stores in order to organize gastronomic events featuring traditional local dishes, good music and conviviality.

Members of Slow Food Iași in Romania, for example, joined small local products over a bowl of soup for a round table on sustainable food production, while Slow Food Youth Bulgaria and Slow Food Bulgaria met at the botanical gardens of Sofia University to talk about sustainable food products over an imaginatively assembled salad.

In Lausanne in Switzerland they cooked 150 kilos of vegetables rescued from the city’s markets and supermarkets, and the Slow Food Youth Network in Germany organized a full day of meetings dedicated not only to food waste but also to subjects such as land grabbing and apiculture.

Food waste is a global problem and a scandal that we have to put a stop to. Be a part of it: join Slow Food in its fight against food waste and write to your country’s environment minister. It’s easy to do: just click on this link, fill in the form with your details and your message will be forwarded automatically to your country’s political decision makers. The campaign has already been officially launched in some EU member countries (United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, …) and the others will follow suit in the coming weeks.

 

 

Want to read more? Here’s Slow Food’s position paper on food waste and the campaign statement including full list of organisational supporters of the campaign.

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