Australia’s Strategies To Combat Food Waste: Spotlighting Initiatives By Everyone From The Federal Government To Small Businesses
Food waste has become a critical issue around the world, and Australia is no exception. The staggering amount of edible food discarded each year has prompted significant action from organisations of all sizes. From government bodies to small, local businesses, efforts are being made to address this pressing concern:
National Food Waste Strategy
Announced in 2017, the National Food Waste Strategy is one of the largest Government initiatives to reduce Australia’s food waste. In collaboration with Stop Food Waste Australia, the strategy aims to halve the Nation’s food waste by 2030.
The strategy includes a number of actions, such as support packages, educating consumers and younger generations about food waste, supporting businesses to reduce food waste and funding new technologies to reduce food waste and provide greater support to food rescue organisations.
The Australian Food Pact
The Australian Food Pact is a voluntary agreement between businesses, the Government, and community organisations to reduce food waste. The pact includes a number of commitments, such as reducing food waste by 20% by 2030, donating excess food to charity and composting food scraps.
Food Rescue Organisations
Founded in 2004 by Ronni Kahn AO, OzHarvest is an Australian charity providing meals to those in need. Each year, OzHarvest provides approximately 20 million meals. Additionally, they offer education and engagement programs to raise awareness about food security and sustainability. OzHarvest also commits to reviewing national and global reports regarding food waste, allowing them to further understand this complex issue and advocate for change when necessary. The charity successfully changed the law in four states in 2005 through The Civil Liabilities Amendment Act, allowing food to be given away for free to those in need without fear of liability.
To learn more about OzHarvest, go to:
SecondBite was founded in 2005 by Ian and Simone Carson with the goal of redirecting edible food to those experiencing food insecurity. At the same time, the organisation helps to address the serious social, environmental and economic challenges associated with food waste.
The organisation obtains excess food from growers, manufactures and retailers and distributes it for free across over 1,100 charities. This helps to address food waste at all levels of the supply chain. The rescued food is then used to supply nutritional meals, community pantries, relief packages and more.
To learn more about SecondBite, go to:
Established in 2001, FareShare is an Australian charity that provides free meals to those in need. The charity aims to provide dignity and nutrition back to those suffering from food insecurity. The meals are prepared in Melbourne and Brisbane, in some of Nation’s largest not-for-profit kitchens. FareShare collects rescued, donated and homegrown food to create their tasty and healthy meals. These meals are then distributed through soup vans, homeless shelters, womens’ refuges and other relief organisations.
To learn more about FareShare, go to:
Small Businesses and Local Initiatives
Reground is a small business that assists individuals and businesses to create a circular economy through innovative waste disposal methods. The business focuses on collecting coffee grounds, chaff and soft plastics, diverting them from landfill and repurposing them.
To learn more about Reground, go to:
Food Organics & Garden Waste (FOGO)
FOGO is a kerbside collection service offered by selected local government composting facilities. This service allows food waste to be included in the garden waste (green lid) bin for recycling into premium compost.
To find out if FOGO is available in your area, visit your local council website.
Successfully managing food waste in Australia requires a collaborative effort by everyone in the Nation, from individuals to large organisations and everyone in between. It’s important to familiarise yourself with these initiatives so you too can take part.
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