To any rational observer, the modern human food production system appears to be completely insane. Not only are we wrecking the planet's eco systems to make way for our food, we are throwing almost half of it away.
According to the United Nations Environment Program and (UNEP) and the World Resources Institute (WRI) roughly one-third of all food produced worldwide gets either lost or wasted. The lost food is not only worth around US$1 trillion, but criminally does not go to feed the one in nine human beings who suffer from chronic undernourishment.
Thankfully, there are signs we might be waking up from this madness as France has enacted a law that prevents large supermarkets from throwing away edible food. Reports the Independent:
France is making it illegal for large supermarkets to throw away edible food as part of a series of measures to cut down on waste.
The country’s National Assembly unanimously voted in new laws on Thursday night that will force chains to donate discarded food to charity or allow it to be turned into animal feed, compost or energy.
Guillaume Garot, a Socialist politician who sponsored the bill, said: “It’s scandalous to see bleach being poured into supermarket dustbins along with edible foods.”
The new law reflects the French government's target of halving food waste by 2025 - a noble enough goal despite the fact that industrialized nations waste nearly as much food as sub-Saharan Africa creates.
Regardless, it is a step in the right direction.