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Food Losses in Supply Chains for Fruits, Vegetables and Potatoes between Field and Retail Shelf in North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany

  • Food losses occur for many reasons at all stages of supply chains for fruits, vegetables and potatoes. They cause immense economic, environmental and social costs – not only in developing countries but also in developed countries. According to the European Commission, about 90 million tonnes of food are wasted annually in Europe alone. However, particularly for the early stages of supply chains for fruits, vegetables and potatoes there is still a lack of reliable data. Thus, one objective of this study is to contribute to the quantification of food losses between field and retail, where the main focus is set on potatoes, apples, carrots, strawberries and asparagus. Furthermore, neither reasons why products are removed from the supply chains nor their alternative uses are fully examined yet. This is why, the study takes a look on those issues, too. Results are based on data from an online survey among producers of fruits, vegetables and potatoes in North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany and on interviews with producers and other supply chain experts. Findings suggest that the products’ size and form, their storage capabilities and food safety issues have big impacts on food losses. Despite a small sample size, these findings are in line with recent studies.

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Document Type:Conference Object
Author:Christian H. Meyer, Dominik Frieling, Martin Hamer, Gero Oertzen
Parent Title (English):Deiters, Rickert et al. (Eds.): Proceedings of the 11th International European Forum on System Dynamics and Innovation in Food Networks. February 13-17, 2017, Innsbruck-Igls, Austria
First Page:24
Last Page:30
Place of publication:Bonn
Publishing Institution:Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg
Date of first publication:2017/06/29
Funding Information:The study was funded by the Ministry for Climate Protection, Environment, Agriculture, Conservation and Consumer Protection of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.
Keyword:food losses; fruits, vegetables and potatoes; supply chain management; sustainable food systems
Departments, institutes and facilities:Internationales Zentrum für Nachhaltige Entwicklung (IZNE)
Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC):3 Sozialwissenschaften / 36 Soziale Probleme, Sozialdienste / 360 Soziale Probleme und Sozialdienste; Verbände
6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 63 Landwirtschaft / 630 Landwirtschaft und verwandte Bereiche
Entry in this database:2017/07/18
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY-NC - Namensnennung - Nicht kommerziell 4.0 International