12 Oct 2014

The Biggest Economy

imageAn IMF report last week projects China to be the world’s largest economy, totting $17.6 trillion with the US of A coming second with $17.4 trillion. This should not be a surprise to many as at the start of the year, the World Bank also foretold this occurrence. 

The fact that the comparison is based on PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) is also well known, as well the fact that in non-adjusted GDP terms China is around $6 trillion behind USA. 

What is surprising is that there goes on a debate about who holds the crown of the largest economy.

Insights into Food Loss and Waste

A High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) was established by FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) in 2010 as the science-policy interface of the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS). On 3 July 2014, the HLPE published report #8 titled “Food losses and waste in the context of sustainable food systems”. 

At its onset, the report states that accurate estimates of losses in the food system are unavailable, though it reiterates that best evidence at hand indicates that global food waste stands at 1/3rd of production. It goes on to state that myriad approaches to defining food losses and waste tend to be confounding.

For the referenced report, the following definitions are used. Food Loss and Waste (FLW) is “a decrease, at all stages of the food chain from harvest to consumption, in mass, of food that was originally intended for human consumption, regardless of the cause”. Some key phrases here is “in mass” and “for human consumption”.

Food Loss & Waste (FLW) has two distinct components – food loss occurring before consumption and food waste occurring at consumption level.