Municipalities must set goals for reducing food waste

Clear goals help the municipalities to reduce food waste and increase climate action.

NGOs suggest in their Guidelines for climate action, published this spring, that municipalities should draft a reduction program for food waste, which would reduce the waste by 50% until 2025, from the level in 2017.

As the municipal elections are approaching, it is good to discuss with the candidates. Are they committed to pursuing the 50% decrease in food waste?

– It’s good that the goal is set high. We at the Joint Authority of the Helsinki and Uusimaa Hospital District have made efforts in reducing food waste, but also the households could do much more, says candidate Maaret Castrén of the National coalition party, who works as a head of department at HUS.

– I am committed to drive forward the 50% reduction, says candidate of the Greens Leo Stranius, and adds that he has also made some initiatives on the topic.

Food waste has become the easier subject of food discussion in recent years, as the climate debate has been heated at times. A more efficient way of reducing the carbon footprint, however, is transition into plant based diets. This matter was brought forward in Dodo’s email enquiry by Laura Kolehmainen, candidate of the Left Alliance.

NGOs, including Dodo, also suggest in the aforementioned guideline that municipalities set consistent and measurable goals for the reduction of animal based produce and for environmentally sustainable acquisition of food. Regarding this, the NGOs suggest a 50% minimum share requirement for plant based food.

See climate messages of NGOs: The carbon neutral Finland is made in municipalities and cities – together with the citizens (in Finnish).

Text: Elisa Niemi, translation Laura Hakanpää

This article is a part of the Use it all -food waste project, supported by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. The project brings forward good practises in reducing food waste in, among others, a food waste tour in September.

*The questionnaire was sent to four candidates of each party forming the parliament. The candidates were from cities where Dodo has activities, that is, from Helsinki, Turku, Tampere and Oulu. All the cited candidates are from Helsinki.