G-20 News

G20 countries have ‘room for improvement’ in food sustainability, according to Economist Intelligence Unit and Barilla Foundation

LONDON, July 14, 2021 / PRNewswire / – G20 countries must lead by example ahead of the United Nations Food Systems Summit by further reducing food loss and waste and improving diets and agriculture, say the authors of the Food Sustainability Index (FSI).

The FSI, developed by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) with the Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition (BCFN), found “room for improvement” in most countries, with only Canada and Japan in the upper quartile for the three pillars.

Other top performers include Australia, France, Italy and the UK, while the US was among the worst performers on excessive meat consumption and land conversion for agriculture.

Indonesia and Saudi Arabia were the worst performing countries on all indicators.

“G20 members generate 80% of global economic production and 75% of global greenhouse gas emissions, giving these countries both the opportunity and the responsibility to lead the way in food sustainability,” said Martin koehring, Regional Manager (EMEA) for Sustainability, Climate Change and Natural Resources at EIU.

The ISF revealed progress in reducing the 931 million tonnes of food wasted globally each year, but none of the countries had published plans to account for losses or monitor reduction strategies.

The authors also highlighted diets in the United States, where the average consumer eats almost 250g more meat per day than recommended.

The report cited evidence that following government dietary guidelines would reduce premature deaths by 15% and emissions by 13%, highlighting the UK’s ‘Five a Day’ campaign to increase fruit and vegetable consumption by 10% .

According to the FSI, all G20 countries had dietary guidelines, but only four included sustainability as a measure of healthy eating. Although 13 countries have strict new climate action targets, only Indonesia and Canada taken into account the agricultural sector in their national plans.

“We know that sustainable food systems are an integral part of the sustainable development pathways envisioned by the United Nations 2030 Agenda. G20 leadership can drive the transformational change needed in food systems to meet all of our global goals, from reducing hunger and poverty to tackling climate change, ”said Dr. Marta Antonelli, head of research at BCFN.

SOURCE Barilla Foundation