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Photo: DAFC

New Danish survey: consumers want to reduce food waste

A new survey conducted for the Danish Agriculture and Food Council reveals that eight out of ten consumers 'often' or 'always' try to avoid food waste and almost half the respondents said that food waste is something they are keen to address to ensure sustainable consumption.

Avoiding food waste is high on the agenda as a means of improving sustainability in food consumption. This is revealed in a new survey conducted by Kantar Gallup for the Danish Agriculture & Food Council.

Mette Gammicchia from the Danish Agriculture and Food Council says:

“The results of the survey are extremely interesting because they show that the Danes themselves believe they are doing a lot to reduce food waste, but we can nevertheless conclude that there is still much to be done because food waste is a major challenge for sustainability globally and in Denmark. CO2 emissions from food waste in Denmark alone account for 2.2 million tonnes of CO2.”

Consumer habits
The new survey shows that it is mostly women and consumers over 50 who believe that seasonal buying contributes to more sustainable consumption.

Some 48 per cent believe that sustainable consumption is about buying locally, and consumers over the age of 50 are more likely to avoid food waste and use their own bags when they shop.

The survey also shows has 56 per cent of those surveyed either 'to a great extent' or 'to some extent' think about sustainability when they shop.

At Fødevaredagen (Food Day) held in September on the island of Funen in Denmark, Danish retailers, food service providers and representatives from Denmark’s food industry gathered to discuss sustainability and climate impact on food production. The event was hosted by the Danish Agriculture and Food Council.
“Food Day focused on sustainability in all its aspects,” says Mette Gammicchia. “It also provided an opportunity for food professionals to network. We hope, of course, that the event inspired new ideas for improving sustainability, and for developing new partnerships across the food sector.”

Food waste has been a major issue in Denmark for many years. The country has launched a significant number of awareness campaigns, food waste supermarkets have been set up and schools have introduced 'food waste' into the curriculum. Between 2010-2015 Denmark reduced its food waste by no less than 25 per cent.