Canada joins food waste week

This year, from March 7 to 13, Canada is joining with environmental charity WRAP for the first global Food Waste Action Week, with the goal of driving home the message, “Wasting Food Feeds Climate Change.”

The international week of action will be delivered through the National Zero Waste Council, an initiative of Metro Vancouver, and its “Love Food Hate Waste Canada” (LFHW) campaign. This is the inaugural international Food Waste Action Week, as the 2021 edition was a UK-only pilot. Participants include LFHW UK, LFHW New Zealand and LFHW Canada.

Love Food Hate Waste Canada campaign partners include: Metro Vancouver, City of Vancouver, Capital Regional District, City of Toronto, City of Winnipeg, RECYC-QUEBEC and Walmart Canada.

“Food waste has a devastating impact on the planet, and each of us has an important role to play,” said Jack Froese, chairman of the National Zero Waste Council.

“As someone with a lifelong connection to farming, I know full well how hard farmers work to put nutritious and tasty food on Canadian tables. Food Waste Action Week is all about helping people get the most from the food they buy, for the sake of the planet.”

Sixty-three percent of the food Canadian households throw away could have been eaten. Nationwide, that amounts to almost 2.2 million tonnes of edible food wasted each year, at a cost of more than $17 billion.

The environmental impact of this waste is equivalent to 9.8 million tonnes of CO2 emissions, or 2.1 million cars on the road.

Globally, around one-third of all food produced is lost or wasted, which accounts for between eight and 10% of total greenhouse gas emissions. Fighting food waste at home has a direct impact on these emissions: every tonne of household food waste that is avoided is the equivalent of taking one car off the road each year.

To participate in Food Waste Action Week, Canadians are encouraged to use the food-saving tips shared on the Love Food Hate Waste Canada social channels (Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter) and through the #foodwasteactionweek hashtag. From storing food correctly, to using up leftovers and making sure food does not go to waste, every small change can make a big difference.

Food Waste Action Week has the support of Love Food Hate Waste Canada’s strategic partners and many other business, non-profit, and government organizations and citizens working across Canada in the fight against food waste. During Canada’s first Food Waste Action Week, the organizations will share food-saving tips and strategies and draw attention to the important role food waste prevention can play in fighting climate change.

“When we reduce waste, we also lessen carbon emissions and make a positive impact on the environment,” said Sam Wankowski, chief operations officer at partner Walmart Canada.

“Our associates are passionate about reducing food waste in our stores and throughout our operations. Each Walmart store is paired with a local food bank to maximize surplus food donations. The LFHW campaign provides Canadians with practical solutions to save money and prevent surplus food. When we all work together, we can create waves of change in our communities.”