On World Food Day, 16 October 2017, Toine Timmermans, Program Manager Circular Economy in Food at Wageningen University & Research, and Coordinator of the EU projects FUSIONS and REFRESH, presented at the event Harnessing Research and Innovation for FOOD 2030 in Brussels.


The Hungarian pilot working platform (PWP) meeting was organised in a conference form in line with the National Agriculture and Food Exhibition and Fair. The event took place in September 2017 and the main organizer was the Agricultural Marketing Agency. The primary objective of the event was to present professionally the development of advanced, efficient, environmentally conscious businesses, family farms, small and primary producers, and introduce its values ​​and results to the profession and to the general public. One of the main focus points of the event was the fight against food waste.


The Hungarian Pilot Working Platform initiated and started executing the pilot project “Ugly but tasty” pilot project in February 2017.  The main goal of the pilot is to start working on “farm to fork” approach food waste related activities in the fruit & vegetable sector. This chain is one of the shortest chains as processing is not part of it, thereby we can relatively easier focus on the full chain from production to consumer.

The main focus of the project is on the lower quality products, where the plan is to test possible channels for both on a marketed (sale) and a non-marketed (free redistribution) basis.


In April 2017 The Hungarian Pilot Working Platform initiated and started executing the pilot project “Just like at home”. The aim of the project is to dissolve the paradox of “oversupply by virtual needs” and creating a common basis of understanding and awareness about the issue of food waste in the whole chain (from caterer to consumer) by matching a realistic/real demand/supply in this special type of consumer scenario where the cost of food is not a primary selector.


The Hungarian Pilot Working Platform has initiated and started executing a new pilot project in May 2017. The goal of the project “Broadening the bridge” is to model the total cost of redistribution within the “redistribution supply chain” including food banks and redistribution partner organisations, calculate the potential return on investment in case of additional funding and look at possible funding sources, especially concentrating the existing resources in the social care system such as using the existing (and maybe not 100%-ly used) capacities and potential funding sources such as the EU FEAD program.


A new digital network has been launched to encourage collaboration and bring together expertise from across Europe and beyond in a focussed response to the global issue of food waste. The Community of Experts (CoE) aims to help drive action at every level of the supply chain by empowering individuals, organisations and nations through the sharing of skills, knowledge and resources needed to act against food waste.


The report presents a summary of the first official food waste monitoring in Flanders at chain level and for each step in the agri-food chain. It also explains the framework, objective and approach of the monitoring. 


In September 2017 the Life Cycle Management Conference was held in Luxembourg. REFRESH partner BOKU chaired and contributed to the Food Waste session, which was visited by his royal highness Prince Louis.


In October 2017 the REFRESH Community of Experts (CoE) will be launched at refreshcoe.eu. The CoE is a digital platform for sharing initiatives and best practice on food waste prevention. Users of the CoE will be able to find and share research and resources, initiate discussions and connect with fellow experts. Food waste experts are invited to share their expertise and resources.


In April 2017 agreement was reached with the German retailer PENNY to conduct an employee training programme as first German REFRESH pilot project.


The contest, "Sustainable Development and Our Food – Reducing Food Waste: China Youth Environmental Protection Originality Contest", took place in China. Nearly a thousand innovative works by Chinese pupils reached the organizing committee, varying in forms like videos, paintings, photos, articles, etc. Ten works each were appraised and selected from primary schools and secondary schools.


In June 2017 the 2nd meeting of the EU Platform on Food Losses & Food Waste, organised by DG Health and Food Safety, was held. REFRESH coordinator Toine Timmermans, together with Kate Bygrave who leads the ‘Framework for Actions’ work package, presented the RFERESH project, its establishment of national frameworks for action, success factors and recent developments within the national platforms of Germany, Hungary, Spain, and the Netherlands.


In July 2017, REFRESH reached out to consumers in its four pilot countries (The Netherlands, Germany, Spain and Hungary) to complete a survey on food and drink products. The purpose of the research is to investigate different contents and formats of on-pack information and their effect on consumer understanding and food waste behaviours in these four EU member states. The results of the survey will be disseminated towards the end of 2017.


German radio station SWR explores research and innovation to reduce food waste, featuring an interview with REFRESH researcher Stephanie Wunder on REFRESH's contribution to food waste reduction.


Champions 12.3 is a coalition of high-level stakeholders dedicated to mobolizing action on SDG 12.3 on food waste. Activities in mid-2017 included conferences, media outreach, awards, and speeches at key stakeholder events. 


As a Spanish Refresh platform’s pilot project, Gastrofira, the catering service at Fira Barcelona, is collaborating with CREDA-UPC-IRTA to reduce the amount of food waste generated through their activities.

 


A recent article in the Spanish "digitalmagazine" analyzes the complexity of the causes and solutions to food waste in Europe. Spanish Refresh partner, CREDA-UPC-IRTA, is working with WRAP as wells as key national actors to tackle food waste in Catalonia and Spain. 
 
 

Gastrofira is the catering service of “Feria de Barcelona”, one of the most important European trade fair organisations. They have joined the Refresh platform, and specifically Spain’s first pilot project, as a way to reduce their food waste.


As part of REFRESH we are reaching out to capture information for an up-to-date overview of current and best practice commercial examples of re-using or re-processing food sector by-products and wastes. Please contribute knowledge and contacts to the survey by 31 October 2017! Contributing to this survey supports the wider objectives of REFRESH for an efficient and sustainable use of non-preventable food sector by-products.


A contest for raising awareness about food waste is taking place in China. It challenges participants to submit images or videos describing new ways to treat food waste, investigate the phenomenon and/or offer solutions for better promoting awareness on the issue. It builds on the previous REFRESH contest carried out in Europe.


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