Ghana Loses GH¢762.32 Billion Through Food Waste – Research

Food Waste
Food Waste

World Food Day is celebrated every year on 16 October to commemorate the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). Collective action across 150 countries and in more than 50 languages makes World Food Day one of the most celebrated UN days of the year worldwide.

At an event organized by Food for All Africa in Yeji,the Pru East district of Bono East region to commemorate World Food day 2022 in Ghana, a new research report that shares policy recommendations for strengthening food donations in Ghana to help mitigate food waste, hunger, and climate change was released.

Produced by the Harvard Law School Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC) and The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) and in partnership with Food for All Africa, the findings on Ghana build on earlier research as part of The Global Food Donation Policy Atlas, which offers a global examination of laws and policies affecting food donation around the world.

Speaking at the event, Executive Director of Food for All Africa, Chef Elijah Addo indicated that 3.2 million tons of food is either lost or wasted along the supply chain in Ghana, costing about 762.32 billion in Ghanaian cedis (GH₵), while half the population of Ghana is moderately to severely food insecure.

The Atlas project research identified four actionable policy recommendations designed to reduce food waste and redirect it to people experiencing hunger or food insecurity in Ghana:

To ensure that confusion regarding date labels does not result in disposing food that is safe to eat, sell, or donate, the Ghanaian government could standardize and clarify date labels and require that manufacturers or retailers use only one of two prescribed labels.

To offset costs businesses incur when donating food, Ghanaian leaders could amend the VAT Act to categorize donations for all food items as “zero-rated” goods and develop tax guidance for food donors and food recovery organizations that clarifies the existing or newly adopted scheme.

To encourage food donation and ensure that food is safe, Ghanaian leaders could amend the Public Health Act (PHA) to include a donation-specific section that eliminates uncertainty around which PHA provisions apply to food safety, as well as disseminate clarifying guidance on food safety requirements relevant to donation.

To ensure that liability concerns related to donating food do not deter potential donors, Ghanaian leaders could adopt national legislation that establishes clear liability protection for food donors and food recovery organizations when the donated food complies with all applicable laws and regulations.

Chairperson for the program, Tatakpaengyihene Nana Kwame Dennyeh commended government’s effort in reducing hunger in the district through the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty, Planting for Food and Jobs and the Ghana School Feeding initiative. He called on the district assembly to increase the quota on the number of schools and beneficiaries benefiting from government hunger relief initiatives to create more impact.

The District Chief Executive for the Pru East , Hon. Alhaji Adams Abdulai on his part commended Food for All Africa for choosing his district to commemorate the day and encouraged more public-private partnerships to help vulnerable people across his district and Ghana.

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