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Efficient reduction of food waste in the processing sector

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National Strategy for Food Waste Reduction - Dialogue Forum Processing

The food processing sector includes craft as well as industrial companies and processes raw material from agriculture and fisheries. In 2015, 2.17 million tons of food waste were generated only at this level in the agri-food value chain. We want to support those involved in processing to reduce their food waste.

Background and Objective

The Federal government is pursuing the goal of halving per capita food waste at retail and consumer level by 2030. In addition, food losses should be reduced along the entire value chain. The Federal Government has included these goals and approaches in the National Strategy for the Reduction of Food Waste. As part of this, Dialogue Forums were set up for various sectors (primary production, processing, wholesale and retail, out-of-home sector and private households).

The aim of this Dialogue Forum is to quantify food losses and to analyse causes of food losses in the processing sector. In addition, reduction measures will be developed, implemented and evaluated.

Target Group

Scientists, practitioners and politicians.


In order to encourage the communication between scientists and practitioners and to reduce food losses together, so-called round tables are being set up for each product group (dairy, meat processing, baked goods and pasta, fruit and vegetable processing, beverage production, frozen food and other foods).

Together we will quantify and analyse food waste in the processing sector. In addition, reduction measures will be developed, implemented and evaluated in demonstration businesses.

In order to achieve the goals formulated in the National Strategy, voluntary agreements will be made between the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture and the actors in the processing sector.

Data and Methods

Based on the study ‘Baseline 2015 – food waste in Germany‘, the food losses and waste monitoring will be optimized in order to improve data quality and close data gaps.

The reduction measures will be evaluated using a predefined assessment framework, based on the assessment framework of the EU Joint Research Centre.

Our Research Questions

How much food is lost on the processing stage?

Which reduction measures are efficient?


Recommendations for action on monitoring and reduction measures for practitioners and politicians.

Links and Downloads

DLG : Dialogue Forums on primary production and processing

Too Good For The Bin: National Strategy for Food Waste Reduction

Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture: National Strategy of Food Waste Reduction

Involved external Thünen-Partners

  • Deutsche Landwirtschafts-Gesellschaft (DLG)
    (Frankfurt/M., Deutschland)

Funding Body

  • Federal Office for Agriculture and Food (BLE)
    (national, öffentlich)


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