The Impact of Food Waste on Global Hunger and Food Security

One of the most serious problems facing the world today is the global food crisis. Although enough food is being produced in the world, millions of people are still suffering from hunger. It is in this context that food waste becomes a key aspect that has an alarming impact on global hunger and food security.

What is food waste? It is the process by which food is lost at various stages of the supply chain, from agricultural production to storage, distribution and consumption. The amount of food wasted is frighteningly high, with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reporting that it reaches about 1.3 billion tons per year.

This waste has a colossal impact on the global food landscape, contributing to the difficulty of providing food for everyone in the world. However, how exactly does food waste affect global hunger and food security?

 1. Food Loss vs. Lack of Access to Food:
Food waste means lost opportunities to provide food to people who do not have sufficient access to adequate food. It is estimated that as many as 820 million people worldwide suffer from chronic hunger, while at the same time huge amounts of food are lost. If this wasted food could be used for nutrition, it could significantly reduce this gap.

 2. Impact on Economic and Social Living Conditions:
Food waste also has an impact on the economic and social conditions of many communities around the world. In developing countries where hunger is widespread, a large portion of income is consumed on food. When food is lost, hard-working but poor people lose not only the opportunity to eat, but also their livelihoods.

 3. Consequences for the Environment:
Food waste has a huge impact on the environment. Food production involves the use of natural resources such as water, soil and energy. When food is wasted, these resources are lost along with it. In addition, organic waste dumped in landfills decomposes, emitting methane – a powerful greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change.

Reducing food waste is a key step in combating global hunger and improving food security around the world. However, it is a complex problem that requires a comprehensive approach.
How can we reduce food waste? Education is key. Both consumers and producers need to be aware of the magnitude of the problem and take action to reduce food waste. Non-profit organizations, governments and businesses should work together to develop innovative logistics and technology solutions to reduce food waste.

Lessons learned? Food waste is not only an ethical problem, but also a matter of humanity’s survival on the planet. By reducing food waste, we can not only meet the nutritional needs of all people, but also protect the environment by promoting a more sustainable and just world.
By acting together, we can make a difference. Everyone, from consumers to decision-makers at the international level, has a role to play in ensuring that food waste becomes a thing of the past, not an everyday occurrence.


  • Report of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Poland: “Food Waste in Poland”.

  • FAO (Organizacja Narodów Zjednoczonych do spraw Wyżywienia i Rolnictwa) – “The State of Food and Agriculture 2019”.

  • European Commission, Joint Research Centre – “FUSIONS (Food Use for Social Innovation by Optimising Waste Prevention Strategies)”.

  • Parfitt, Julian, Mark Barthel, i Sarah Macnaughton. “Food waste within food supply chains: quantification and potential for change to 2050”. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 365.1554 (2010): 3065-3081.
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