Resources on Food and Food Waste
Original Video Materials and Slides
- The Problem of Food Waste is a well-structured overview of causes of food waste along the food chain.
Random Bits of Useful Information
Food Composition Databases
- The Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office (FSVO) keeps The Swiss Food Composition Database, which contains information about the composition of products available in Switzerland. Available for free in four languages; can be downloaded and has also a web interface: https://naehrwertdaten.ch.
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture keeps FoodData Central a detailed database of food composition, with nutrients and other components found in a wide variety of foods and food products. Can be downloaded.
- The NHS has a Calorie checker, which allows to check the caloric content of about 150.000 different products. It is part of the Live Well portal.
- INRAN keeps BDA. The data, however, requires an explicit consent to be used.
- FAO lists various food composition databases on the International food composition table/database directory.
Foodprint - Measuring Waste
- Food Loss and Waste Database contains data about food losses and waste. The Food Loss and Waste database is the largest online collection of data on both food loss and food waste and causes reported throughout the literature. The database contains data and information from openly accessible reports and studies measuring food loss and waste across food products, stages of the value chain, and geographical areas
- FAO Food Loss Analysis (FLA) reports and factsheets contains various reports about food losses, among which some “verticals”, such as, for instance: FAO 2018. Food loss analysis: Factsheet: Case study on chickpea supply chain in India.
- FAO The State of Food and Agriculture is a more in-depth document, released in 2019
- U.N. Environment Programme - FOOD WASTE INDEX REPORT 2021 describes methodologies for measuring food waste. It complements the FAO data sets on Food Losses
- World Resources Institute, Reducing Food Loss and Waste, Setting a Global Action Agenda, 2019;
- WWF Farm Loss Report, targets a topic seldom analyzed, namely that of losses before leaving the farm.
Foodprint - Environmental Impact Data
- The Water footprint website has many resources about the water we use. The Product Gallery page contains information and references about the water required by different kind of food products. (Link signaled by Roberta Massa, Rete Ricibo). The scientific sources can be found here1.
- The BBC has the food calculator, which estimates the carbon footprint of various products. The scientific sources (including a downloadable Excel file) can be found here2
- Our World in data has a page about the Environmental Impact of Food,
with data covering carbon emissions, land and water impact. One of
the sources is Poor and Nemecek report, which is also the basis for
the Water footprint website mentioned earlier. Detailed list of links:
- The earthday.org website has a page listing various foodprint calculators available online.
- The FoodPrint website has various information about food production practices and their impact, among which a quiz, which provides an overall qualitative impact evaluation and suggestions about one’s choices with food (e.g., Meat consumption, Food waste, Food literacy, Local and Seasonal Sourcing, Worker welfare, Animal welfare). It is a program of the Grace Communications Foundation.
- A multilevel carbon and water footprint dataset of food commodities is a recent article analysis and providing data about CO_2 emissions of food. Data available here.
Agriculture & Food Impact
- The world’s forgotten greenhouse gas discusses about NO2 and its impact on climate change
- Mekonnen, M.M. and Hoekstra, A.Y. (2011) The green, blue and grey water footprint of crops and derived crop products, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 15(5): 1577-1600.
- Mekonnen, M.M. and Hoekstra, A.Y. (2010) The green, blue and grey water footprint of crops and derived crop products, Value of Water Research Report Series No.47, UNESCO-IHE. Main report, Appendices.
- J. Poore, T. Nemecek, Reducing food’s environmental impacts through producers and consumers, Science, 360(6392), 987–992. Page hosting the paper and page with data in Excel format.