First International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste to be observed on 29 September 2020

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the UN Environment Programme and their partners will mark tomorrow – 29 September – the first International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste.

The Day is marked in the context of rising global hunger and climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic’s ongoing threat to the food and nutrition security of millions of people, and increased food loss and waste – a result of movement and transport restrictions due to the pandemic.

COVID-19 aside, each year, about 14 percent of the world’s food is lost before even reaching the market. Food loss is valued at $400 billion annually, and food loss and waste generate eight percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.

The global event will be an opportunity to send a strong message for everyone to step up their actions to stem food loss and waste. 

The event will take place virtually on 29 September, 10:00-13:30 NY time/ 16:00 – 19:30 Rome time  

The marking of the Day - under the slogan Stop food loss and waste. For the people. For the planetwill take place during the 75th session of the UN General Assembly.

The event will be hosted by FAO and UN Environment Programme – the agencies leading global efforts on food loss and waste reduction together with Andorra, Argentina and San Marino who were instrumental in establishing the international day through a UN General Assembly resolution adopted unanimously last year. 

It will feature addresses by: QU Dongyu, Director-General, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; Inger Andersen, Executive Director, UN Environment Programme; video message by António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations; Luis Basterra, Argentina’s Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries; Maria Ubach Font, Andorra’s Minister of Foreign Affairs; Luca Beccari, San Marino’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Economic Cooperation and Telecommunications; Bekir Pakdemirli, Turkey’s Minister of Agriculture and Forestry; video message by Stella Kyriakides, European Commissioner, Health and Food Safety; Gilbert F. Houngbo, President, International Fund for Agriculture Development; David Beasley, Executive Director, World Food Programme; Martien van Nieuwkoop, Global Director for Agriculture and Food, World Bank; and video message from Chef José Andrés.

Keynote addresses will be followed by two panel discussions – on food loss and waste and sustainability, and innovation respectively.

 The full list of the event’s speakers and panel participants can be found here.

 You can follow the event here (live webcast) or by registering at the Zoom event here.

 Journalists are invited to request one-on-one interviews through the media contacts listed in the right-hand column.



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International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste

Food Loss and Waste Platform

UNGA Resolution proclaiming the Day -  UN Resolution


Adel Sarkozi

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Keishamaza Rukikaire

Sophie Loran

Media Contacts