Member survey collects 201 activities against food waste

The German REFRESH Steering Committee (SC) met for its seventh meeting on 8 November 2018 in Wuppertal. Seventeen representatives from various companies and institutions discussed own activities, European and German political developments and the future of the committee.

The members of the REFRESH Steering Committee (SC) are energetically working on actions against food waste. A (not exhaustive) survey conducted in 2018 among the 16 SC members collected a total of 201 activities, of which 18 have been started in the course of this year (see here the outcomes of last year’s survey). Each of them dealt with one or several of the five areas the SC identified in October 2016 as priorities to be tackled. For example, there was a pleasing number of new activities with the focus on the interface of food production with other actors. Nevertheless, impact measurement seems to remain an issue, as only one new activity included an evaluation, while six potentially relevant 2018 activities did not (for 11 new activities such as participation of events, an anniversary or a digital column it was not applicable). This year’s survey also revealed that the activities can serve multiple objectives in addition to food waste reduction, such as customer and employee sensitization, cost reduction, packaging reduction, flexible offerings and social commitment.

If you would like to know more about the activities of the German REFRESH members, watch the REFRESH Community of Experts, as the many of them will be shared there in the coming months.

Wishes for the future

When asked for wishes and suggestions for the future of the REFRESH SC, a large number of members responded that they would like to see the cooperation to continue beyond the official end of the REFRESH project in summer 2019. Furthermore, cross-sectoral projects should be strengthened to promote exchange. Sector-specific platforms were seen as an opportunity to have more room for discussion about (binding) agreements and joint projects. Besides the wish to bring together the many existing national and regional initiatives, international cooperation was regarded as very important as well.