The problem

     Each year, one-third of the total amount of food produced globally, worth more than $1 trillion (1), is lost. In Africa, the continent sitting on 60% of the world’s arable lands (2), annual post-harvest food losses are as high as 50% of their total production (3). One of the leading factors to such huge losses is limited access to affordable cooling facilities adapted to the african context suffering from lack of financial resources and inadequate infrastructure including water and electricity access. Note that 50% of African population live with no electricity (4).

Financial Impact

The deterioration of the harvested and unstored food and vegetables directly impacts smallholder farmers whose incomes are reduced by at least 15% (5).

Environmental Impact

The environmental effects are also very high; the total carbon footprint of food wastage is around 4.4 Gt CO2 eq per year and 1.4 billion hectares of land is used annually to produce “wasted food” (6).

Pressure of a growing population

  • By 2050, total world population will increase to 9.7 billion, that is two billion more people to feed (7).
  • One quarter of the food lost annually would be enough to feed the world's hungry (8).  
           - - > Therefore, solutions to address post-harvest losses are critical to ensure food security.

(1) Food loss and Food waste, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)
(2) Agricultural Mechanization in Africa, FAO    
(3) Global food losses and food waste, FAO
(4) Access to electricity (% of population)-Sub-Saharan Africa, World Bank Food loss and Food waste, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)
(5) Reducing global food waste and spoilage, GKI (Global Knowledge Initiative)
(6) Food wastage footprint & climate change, FAO
(7) The world population prospects 2019, UN (United Nations)
(8)  Global initiative on food loss and waste reduction, FAO