New national research centre to fight food waste

12 April 2018

Fresh fruit and vegetables

Sustainability Victoria has welcomed the announcement of a new national research effort to reduce food waste from the point of production to its final disposal.

Announced in Sydney today, the $133 million Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre program is a partnership between 57 industry and research participants from around Australia and overseas.

Food waste costs Australia $20 billion a year, and leads to vast amounts of food being sent to landfill.

The Fight Food Waste CRC will:

  • reduce food waste throughout the value chain
  • transform unavoidable waste into innovative high-value products
  • engage with industry and consumers to deliver behavioral change.

Sustainability Victoria CEO, Stan Krpan said $150,000 from SV’s Love Food Hate Waste program will research consumer behaviours concerning food waste, and reducing food waste in the supply chain.

“As Victoria is one of the nation’s major food producers and processors, this is a particularly important issue.”

“The CRC ticks boxes in terms of how we can do more to efficiently produce and process food and deal with waste.”

“The University of Melbourne’s 2016 Melbourne Foodprint report found Melbournians wasted more than 200kg of food per person every year. It‘s not just a waste of resources along the food production and processing chain; it’s a major producer of greenhouses gas emissions as the food decomposes.”

Mr Krpan said the project would help primary producers, food processors, retailers, food rescue agencies and technology and service providers.

“It will also help local government to contain the cost of operating landfills and long-term, that’s good for everyone. It will also reinforce Sustainability Victoria’s work to reduce the production of waste or all types.”

“There are many opportunities to develop and use products derived from primary production that is otherwise wasted.

“We already have a composting industry which uses some food waste, and there is the potential to feed it into digesters which breaks it down, creates gas to drive electricity and reduces what goes to landfill.”

“All this can be done at the point of production or on a regional basis,“ Mr Krpan said.

Find out more about how you can reduce food waste here, and at Sustainability Victoria also has grants for businesses wanting to reduce their waste output through its materials efficiency grants program.

About Sustainability Victoria

Established under the Sustainability Victoria Act 2005, Sustainability Victoria is a statutory authority that facilitates and promotes environmental sustainability in the use of resources.

Sustainability Victoria provides practical ideas and advice to act on climate change use resources wisely.