This comprehensive handbook represents a definitive state of the current art and science of food waste from multiple perspectives.
The issue of food waste has emerged in recent years as a major global problem. Recent research has enabled greater understanding and measurement of loss and waste throughout food supply chains, shedding light on contributing factors and practical solutions. This book includes perspectives and disciplines ranging from agriculture, food science, industrial ecology, history, economics, consumer behaviour, geography, theology, planning, sociology, and environmental policy among others. The Routledge Handbook of Food Waste addresses new and ongoing debates around systemic causes and solutions, including behaviour change, social innovation, new technologies, spirituality, redistribution, animal feed, and activism. The chapters describe and evaluate country case studies, waste management, treatment, prevention, and reduction approaches, and compares research methodologies for better understanding food wastage.
This book is essential reading for the growing number of food waste scholars, practitioners, and policy makers interested in researching, theorising, debating, and solving the multifaceted phenomenon of food waste.
Table of Contents
Food Waste 4.0: An Introduction to Contemporary Food Waste Studies Part I Understanding Modern Food Waste Regimes: Historical, Political Economic and Spiritual Dimensions 1. After Market: Capital, Surplus, and the Social Afterlives of Food Waste 2. The Perfect Storm: A History of Food Waste 3. Food Waste, Religion and Spirituality: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Approaches 4. Interrogating Waste - The Role of Vastogenesis in 21st Century Capitalism Part II Food Waste (and Loss) along the Food Supply Chain and Institutions 5. Produce loss and waste in Agricultural Production 6. Food Waste in Processing and Distribution 7. Food Waste (and Loss) at the Retail Level 8. Household Food Waste 9. Food Waste in the Service Sector: Key concepts, measurement methods and best practices Part III Overview of Regional Food Waste - Research, Policy, and Legal Approaches 10. Food Waste in the United Kingdom and European Union 11. Food Loss and Waste Measurement Methods and Estimates for the United States 12. Apprehending Food Waste in Asia: Policies, Practices and Promising Trends 13. Food Waste in South Africa and Saudi Arabia 14. Food waste in Australia and New Zealand 15. Estimating total and per capita food waste in Brazilian Households: A Scenario Analysis Part IV Methodologies in Food Waste Studies 16. Food Waste Audits, Surveys and New Technologies 17. Moving Beyond the What and How much to the Why? Researching food Waste at the Consumer Level 18. Applying Behaviour Change Methods to Food Waste 19. All My Relations: Applying Social Innovation and Indigenous Methodology to Challenge the Paradigm of Food Waste 20. Modelling Approaches to Food Waste: Discrete Event Simulation; Machine Learning; Bayesian networks; Agent Based Simulation; and Mass Balance estimation Part V Solutions to Food Waste? 21. Surplus Food Redistribution 22. Keeping Unavoidable Food Waste in the Food Chain as Animal Feed 23. From Dumpster Dives to Disco Vibes: The Shifting Shape of Food Waste Activism 24. The Effects of Labelling, Packaging and the Eating Environment on Consumer-Generated Food Waste 25. Upcycling and valorisation of food waste 26. Exploring the Potential of Digital Food Waste Prevention in the Restaurant Industry 27. Food Waste Management, treatment and disposal options. A review and future considerations Part VI Debates in Food Waste Studies and Looking Ahead 28. Conduits that bite back: Challenging the ‘win-win’ solutions of food recalls and redistribution 29. Are You Buying Food Waste? The Roles Technology Can Play in (Re)Designing the Food Retail Experience 30. A Brief Overview of Current Food Waste Research: The What, Why, How and Future Directions 31. Challenging hegemonic conceptions of food waste: critical reflections from a food waste activist
Christian Reynolds is a Knowledge Exchange Research Fellow in the Department of Geography, University of Sheffield, a Technical Specialist in international food sustainability at WRAP, UK, and an adjunct Research Fellow at the Barbara Hardy Institute for Sustainable Environments and Technologies, University of South Australia. His research examines the economic and environmental impacts of food consumption; with focus upon food waste, and sustainable, healthy, and affordable diets.
Tammara Soma is an Assistant Professor in Planning at the School of Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University. She is the Research Director and also the Co-Founder of the Food Systems Lab, the first social innovation lab to address the issue of food waste and food insecurity in Canada.
Charlotte Spring is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Calgary. Her PhD compared UK surplus food redistribution as charitable and activist practice. She has also undertaken considerable campaign work focusing critically on the relationships between food wastage and food insecurity.
Jordon Lazell is a Researcher at the Centre for Business in Society in the Faculty of Business and Law at Coventry University, UK. His research concerns sustainable consumption and production practices with a specific interest in food waste.
"In the Global North, a post-war regime of sufficiency and surplus arguably rendered food waste politically and culturally visible. Academic researchers paid comparatively little attention to it. Over the last decade, the issue has gained significant momentum to become a recognized priority in the global policy arena. It engages a range of stakeholders including activists and campaigners, governments and legislators, citizens and consumers, and even food corporations. The task of understanding and responding to food waste requires attention from a range of academic perspectives. For example, there is a need for a credible definition of what food waste is as well as suitable techniques for measuring and modelling it. There is also a need to understand the social and spatial dynamics of waste generation; the dynamics of international food systems; the relationships between different elements of the food chain, and the interplay of society, economy and environment. I could go on. The point is that the complexities of food waste can be quite overwhelming. This wide-ranging handbook brings together leading authors who together possess a wealth of complementary experience and expertise. By distilling it and collecting it together in one place, this collection offers a much-needed and long-overdue overview and introduction to the various facets of the food waste crisis. Moreover, it offers the potential to develop solutions that are evidence-based, creative and socially just. This will no doubt become the ‘go-to’ resource for interdisciplinary researchers and practitioners working on food waste." - David Evans, Professor of Material Culture and Food Security Lead at the Cabot Institute for Environment, University of Bristol, UK, author of Food Waste and Waste Matters: New Perspective on Food and Society
"Scholarly, original, comprehensive, The Routledge Handbook on Food Waste is timely, indeed long overdue - an invaluable compendium of cross-disciplinary essays and ideas systematically theorizing and explaining key dimensions of today’s global food waste crisis. Its critical and reflective analyses shine fresh light on the history of food loss and waste rooted in political economy and spirituality; its causes along the food supply chain and approaches to policy and practices around the world. It further considers different methodologies including how best to measure food waste as well as distinct cultural approaches to food waste prevention and reduction. Solutions are explored with debates in food waste studies about how best to respond. Whether or not you understand food waste as a symptom of a dysfunctional corporatized food system and/or structurally embedded within overproducing throwaway capitalism, as a researcher, policy maker, think tank analyst, activist or campaigner this book will inform and stimulate your thinking and actions. An essential reference if you are concerned about feeding the world from a human rights perspective." - Graham Riches, Emeritus Professor of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Canada
"This book marks a major milestone in the global movement that has seen food waste surge from an ignored issue some years ago to a universally recognized environmental and development priority. It deftly brings together academics, practitioners, radical critics of the status quo, and very importantly gives voices from the Global South their rightful place at the center of debates about food security and sustainability." Tristram Stuart, Founder of Toast Ale, Co-Founder of Feedback, author of Waste: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal
"This handbook brings together writings from a stellar cast of leading writers and thinkers on wasted food. I expect it to be "the" place to go, not only for an interdisciplinary overview of issues and strategies, but also for cutting edge insights and critical perspectives. Readers will walk away with heightened awareness of the ways in which addressing waste of food effectively requires attention to systems, tradeoffs, unintended consequences, and the diverse manifestations of the issue in contexts across the world." - Roni Neff, Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, USA
"If you are interested in food waste, do not forget to read this book. It is an excellent, comprehensive, updated and upgraded compendium of topics around food waste. The book I would have liked to read when I started working on food waste." - Chema Gil, Director, Center for Agro-Food Economics and Development Parc Mediterrani de la Tecnologia, Spain
"This book contributes to our understanding of ways to reduce food loss and waste, which is important for creating a sustainable food system and at the same time tackling the challenges of climate change. It is a complex issue and many different players have a part to play. We need greater awareness and for more people to understand the issue so that we can develop robust solutions. As a Champion for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12.3, I hope that it helps drive achievement of the goal of halving food loss and waste by 2030." - Liz Goodwin OBE, Senior Fellow and Director, Food Loss And Waste, World Resources Institute
"The Routledge Handbook of Food Waste provides a no-stone-unturned analysis of food waste. Devour this volume to understand the topic from a practical, historical, political, religious, cultural, international, or most any perspective. Essential reading in the growing food waste canon." - Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland
"What a fresh approach to food waste! This collection offers a diversity of perspectives from the global south and north and provides thoughtful insight into the morass of issues bound up in the industrial food system that creates so much food waste. It will certainly engage students and scholars alike." - Sarah Elton, Assistant Professor, Ryerson University, Canada
"This handbook’s impressively wide-ranging coverage is a first-rate introduction to the rapidly growing field of ‘food waste studies’. It presents a variety of perspectives and analytic stances on food loss and food waste - juxtaposing campaigning impulses with technical discussions of measurement, moving from behavior change approaches to political economy theorizing. The editors demonstrate the considerable complexities involved, effectively demonstrating that there are no easy answers. They also remember to include upstream problems of post-harvest losses along with those of waste downstream, at household level. And commendably they work at including the ‘global south’ as well as the ‘global north’. All in all, the book assembles an overview of many of the disparate approaches that now must be taken very seriously indeed by anyone sensitive to the fundamental value of food." - Anne Murcott, Honorary Professorial Research Associate, SOAS, University of London, UK; Honorary Professor, University of Nottingham, UK; Professor Emerita, London South Bank University, UK