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2014, the European Year for Combating Food Waste: In early 2012 the European Parliament adopted a resolution calling for urgent action to halve food waste by 2025.

Faced with food waste at all stages -- producers, processors, retailers, catering services and consumers -- MEPs call for a coordinated strategy, combining European and national measures, to improve the efficiency of the food and consumer chain, sector by sector, and to tackle this problem as a matter of urgency. If nothing is done, food waste will increase by 40 % by 2020, says a study published by the Commission.

"The most important issue in the future will be how to meet the growing demand for food, as it will outstrip supply. We can no longer afford to sit idly by while healthy, edible food is thrown away. This is not only an ethical problem, but also an economic and social one, with huge implications for the environment.said rapporteur Salvatore Caronna (S&D, IT) before the vote. "The ball is now in the Commission's court. We are waiting for a convincing European strategy that will propose a course of action for all 27 Member States to tackle the problem in a systematic way. he added.

The resolution also calls for improved access to food for the poor.
"Almost 50 % of healthy food is wasted every year in the European Union, by households, supermarkets, restaurants and the food chain, while 79 million citizens live below the poverty line and 16 million depend on food aid from charities," says the European Parliament, which proposes in the resolution:

Better education for less waste

- An awareness campaign at European and national level.
- The creation of food education courses (especially in schools, because it is from the youngest age that one takes - or not - good eating habits).
- The sharing of good practices.
- Declare 2014 as the European Year for Combating Food Waste.

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Review packaging and labels

- Create a "sell-by date" in addition to the "use-by date" to prevent food from being offered too close to the CSD.
- Offering several package sizes so that consumers can buy portions adapted to their needs.

Encouraging responsible collective catering

- Promote local products and returns redistribution to people in need
- Targeting European support programmes for school fruit and milk consumption (see the example in France of the operation "School Fruit and Milk"). A fruit for the playgroundThe project is financed by the European Union with 50%) and the distribution of food to disadvantaged people.

Food waste in numbers

- Food wastage in the EU: 89 million tonnes per year (179 kg per capita)
- Forecast for 2020 (if no measures are taken): 126 million tonnes (an increase of 40 %)

Origin of waste:
- households: 42 % (here, waste can be avoided at 60%)
- food industry: 39 %
- retailers: 5 %
- catering sector: 14 %
(Source: European Commission)

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