Eight leading Canadian companies – Kraft Heinz Canada, Loblaw Companies Ltd, Maple Leaf Foods, Metro Inc,, Save-On-Foods, Sobeys Inc., Unilever Canada and Walmart Canada – have pledged to take measureable action to prevent and reduce food waste in their own operations by 50 per cent by 2025. Note that Canada’s top three grocers are part of the group.
The announcement was made January 17, 2019 by Canada’s National Zero Waste Council, a government, NGO and business initiative founded by Metro Vancouver, and Provision Coalition, a food industry advisory service.
A recent report by food collection agency Second Harvest says that 58 per cent of food produced and distributed in Canada is wasted annually, 32 per cent of which is avoidable. This avoidable waste costs approximately $49.5 billion each year, reduces the supply of food available to eat and contributes to climate change through methane emissions in landfill.
“Food loss and waste present social, environment and economic challenges for communities, governments and businesses across the country. These challenges demand bold, collaborative action,” says Malcolm Brodie, chair of the National Zero Waste Council.
While the participating companies have already taken significant action within their own organizations to reduce food waste – such as diverting surplus food to those in need, or reusing food that isn’t appropriate for human consumption as livestock feed, compost, or alternative energy – they recognize that more can and must be done.
Sources: Zero Waste National Advisory Council January 17, 2019 news release
Second Harvest January 17, 2019 news release