Food waste management and circular economy in Mediterranean cities
During this webinar, organized by the SFS-MED Platform and held on 25 May 2022, stakeholders from across the Mediterranean shared practical experiences of their engagement in circular economy practices for food waste management at urban/local level. Tackling food waste and circularity from diverse angles of the Mediterranean food systems, they reflected on success factors and challenges, discussing ways to facilitate partnerships and replication of solutions across the Mediterranean.
The discussion was instrumental in demonstrating how food waste management and circular economy can be levers for sustainable food systems. A circular economy approach to food waste would enable to recognize and maintain the value and utility of food products, nutrients and resources for as long as possible, minimizing resource use and upcycling food waste and by-products. In this regard, cities can act as hubs of innovation and connectivity transforming food by-products into more valuable materials. Food waste management and circularity are key entry points for local governments to integrate food systems into local plans and actions. To do so, fostering multi-stakeholder approaches is paramount, so as to synergize and establish a collaborative ecosystem among local governments, civil society, research centres, private sector, international organizations, investors, etc. This cannot happen without education, information and knowledge sharing that enable to train, raise awareness and change the perspective/mind-set of local stakeholders. Last, but not least, this process shall be accompanied by increased investments and innovation.