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Master of Environmental Science and Management: Master's Group Project

Global Food Production and Food Waste Hotspot Analysis

Group Members: Henry Bushell, Isaiah Fowler, Sridhar Iyengar, Darlene (Mika) Munoz, Kathryn Tomasi

Faculty Advisors: Roland Geyer, David Tilman

Client: United Nations Environmental Programme




The primary goal of this project is to aid the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in evaluating past, present, and future conditions of global food production and food wastage. UNEP has a program to reduce food waste by 2030, and by partnering with Bren, we will come up with a life cycle environmental hotspot and improvement analysis of global food production and food wastage.

While top-level global footprints exist, contribution/hotspot analyses of food types are of high interest, and much rarer. Data sets on global food production combined with environmental intensities and contribution analyses of certain food groups will allow us to zoom in on environmental hotspots within food types.

The FAO Food Wastage Footprint was developed in 2013, estimating the greenhouse gasses, water, land use, and biodiversity impacts of food loss and waste, but has not been updated at a global level in the last ten years. With FAO, we are keen to update these estimates using new food loss and waste data and come up with a methodology that becomes a lot more granular about food waste modeling and the fate of food wastage.

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