In the first ‘International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste’ we collect the contribution of CREDA for almost a decade.

Published on September, 29th

This year the International Food Loss and Waste Awareness Day is celebrated for the first time. From CREDA we wanted to collect our contribution to this struggle for almost a decade, our starting point on a day like today. We have done a lot of work, reviewing it today makes us see what remains to be done and confirms our commitment to continue working on it.

CREDA is the group that has led research into food loss and waste (hereinafter LDCs) from the UPC, with a vision of analyzing and assessing the problem of LDCs along the food chain, from the field to homes or in the HORECA channel. In addition, we are a research center with an extensive network of actors involved in the prevention and reduction of LDCs, as well as the use of food along the value chain: producer associations, cooperatives, industries, companies , administrations and entities.

In Catalonia, CREDA has been a key scientific agent in advising the government on public policies for the prevention and reduction of LDCs, participating as a technical advisor in the Interdepartmental Commission for the coordination of the drafting of Law 3/2020., of 11 March, on the prevention of food loss and waste in the Parliament of Catalonia. On the other hand, it has positioned itself as a leading agent in research for different Catalan public entities (Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Livestock, Agencia de Residus de Catalunya, the Barcelona Metropolitan Area and the Agència de Residus de Catalunya ) elaborating several studies presented below. As a final milestone, it should be noted that the director of CREDA has been elected director of the “UPC-Mercabarna Chair for the fight against food waste” awarded to the UPC, to which CREDA will be responsible for the scientific part.

2015-2019   REFRESH (Resource Efficient Food and dRink for the Entire Supply cHain)
CREDA has participated as partner in REFRESH, an H2020 European project which main goal was to take action, improve valorization and propose solutions to reduce food losses and waste across the EU by 30% by 2025. CREDA was involved in two work packages
WP 1: Consumer understanding
WP 2: Business engagement
2015-2019   REFRESH Spanish Platform
Within REFRESH project, CREDA also created and coordinated the Spanish REFRESH platform. Its objective was to improve the cooperation between actors and to stimulate the adoption of policies and practices to minimize reduce food waste at a national level. It also brought CREDA the opportunity of carrying out some projects such as case studies and courses, among many national meetings. Some of them are: Food losses and waste (FLW) diagnose of peach and nectarine along the Catalan food supply chain (2017). This project aimed at quantifying FLW levels along the food supply chain, identifying its main causes and proposing several actions to prevent and reduce FLW. Find the report here .A Valorisation of food surpluses and side-flows and citizens’ understanding. Within this study, CREDA carried out a social experiment to assess the perception of parents regarding school lunches including valorized fruits and vegetables. Find the report here.CREDA also created and coordinated an international course on Food Losses and Waste prevention Management together with WRAP and the IAMZ-CIHEAM. Find out more about the course here.
2016 Protocol for the quantification of food waste in Catalonia (CREDA-UPC-IRTA & UAB, not published)
Methodological proposal to quantify food waste in the primary sector, agroindustry, and wholesale trade in Catalonia. It’s a working protocol to define a methodology for quantifying food waste that can be adapted to the different sectors and stages of the chain. The study was carried out by CREDA in conjunction with the Autonomous University of Barcelona on behalf of the Catalan Waste Agency.
2017 Food losses and waste diagnosis of the peach and nectarine sector, from primary production, through processing and wholesale distribution in Catalonia (2017); (Vidal-Mones, B; et al.2018) 
The study aimed at characterizing the food losses and waste issue among the peach and nectarine value chain in Catalonia in 2017, by providing estimates, identifying its main causes, and proposing prevention actions.
2017 Projecte INTERREG Ecowaste4food
CREDA is a member of the Catalan strategic committee of the ECOWASTE4FOOD project. The Catalan Waste Agency is the main coordinator of the project at the regional level. Within this project, the members of the strategic committee created an Action plan to prevent food losses and waste in Catalonia for 2019-2020.
2018   PhD thesis ‘Understanding food waste behaviors along the food supply chain: a multilevel approach’ (Diaz- Ruiz)
Diaz-Ruiz R, Costa-Font M, Gil JM (2018a) Moving ahead from food-related behaviors: an alternative approach to understand household food waste generation. J Clean Prod 172:1140–1151. doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.10.148
Diaz-Ruiz R, Costa-Font M, López-i-Gelats F, Gil JM (2019) Food waste prevention along the food supply chain: A multi-actor approach to identify effective solutions. Resour Conserv Recycl 149:249–260. doi: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2019.05.031
Diaz-Ruiz R, Costa-Font M, López-i-Gelats F, Gil JM (2018b) A sum of incidentals or a structural problem? The true nature of food waste in the metropolitan region of Barcelona. Sustain 10:. doi: 10.3390/su10103730
2018 Technical paper: What is food waste? 
CREDA researchers have written several dissemination articles on food losses and waste in the Technical Journal of the Agriculture Department of the Catalan Government. ·       
Díaz Ruiz, Raquel; López i Gelats, Feliu. «Food waste’ drivers analysis. A study of the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona». Quaderns agraris, [en línia], 2017, p. 7-37, [Consulta: 28-09-2020]. ·       
What’s food waste? (Diaz-Ruiz, R. 2019)
2019   Food losses and waste prevention law in the Catalan government. Technical advice
CREDA participates as a technical advisor in the drafting of the proposal of the Llei 3/2020. This law aims at promoting food losses and waste prevention along the food supply chain at the Catalan level.
2019   Strategic Food Plan of Catalonia (PEAC) 
CREDA is a member of the “Consell Català de l’Alimentació” and participates in the elaboration od the Strategic Food Plan of Catalonia (Pla Estratègic de l’Alimentació de Catalunya). The later will be the Catalan government’s framework which will provide the foundations and strategic directions to achieve the National Food Pact. It will set objectives, action lines, and indicators for the period 2020-2025 in the field of food and its cross-cutting areas. CREDA is providing advice in areas such as environmental sustainability (involving agriculture and food losses and waste prevention), social sustainability, and competitiveness, among others.
2019   Implementation of a food loss and waste prevention and reduction plan in agri-food companies: principles and guidelines 
CREDA, together with the Agriculture Department of the Catalan Government, elaborated on the guidelines to implement voluntary food losses and waste prevention and reduction plan for companies of the Catalan agri-food sector. It presents 10 principles that can help companies in tackling food losses and waste, from primary production through the whole supply chain. These guidelines aim at increasing the commitment of agrifood sector companies to achieve the SDG 12.3 “reducing food losses in primary production and halving per capita food waste levels in the other stages of the food supply chain by 2030”.·       
Full guidelines report and a presentation video in English.
2019   Food losses and waste diagnosis in the fruit sector: quantification, economic and environmental impact assessment (CREDA-UPC-IRTA & GIRO-IRTA, not published yet) 
This study pretends to increase the knowledge about the quantification of food losses and waste among the value chain of the Catalan fruit sector. The value chain was be analyzed from primary production to wholesale distribution, all through the processing stage and food banks in Catalunya. The project was carried out by CREDA, together is the Organic Waste Management Group (GIRO, “Gestió Integral de Residus Orgànics), the Agriculture Department of the Catalan Government and in collaboration with the Catalan Waste Agency.
2019   Food losses and waste prevention: factsheets on the food valorization opportunities in the main Catalan agro-industrial sectors (VT-IRTA & CREDA-UPC-IRTA, no published yet) 
The study aims at establishing a methodology to identify the main opportunities to prevent, reduce, and valorize food losses and waste of the most strategic agri-food sectors in Catalonia. Several factsheets are being elaborated for the most competitive Catalan crops such as peach and nectarine, apples, pears, citrus, pork, bakery, and artichokes.
2020 Assessing the impact of COVID-19 lockdown in household food waste generation.
CREDA is currently developing a study to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 on food waste at the house level. The study involves the food waste produced in Spain, Italy, Germany, and the United States.
2021 PhD thesis  ‘Assessing the potential of food losses and waste prevention measures as contributors for sustainable diets’ (ongoing – intended to finish in 2021)
Impact assessment of nudging strategies’ potential in preventing plate waste in school canteen; Recent project: Schools against food waste – blog with open-source resources and tools to prevent plate waste in school canteens. Technical and dissemination workshop on “Food waste prevention in metropolitan school canteens

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