WWF collaborates with The Consumer Goods Forum to launch new Global Farm Loss Tool to tackle upstream food loss along global supply chains

World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has launched the Global Farm Loss Tool for growers of all sizes to more easily measure and report on-farm food loss. Developed by WWF and tested with members of the Consumer Goods Forum’s (CGF) Food Waste Coalition and their growers, the tool provides a user-friendly and simplified approach to help farmers and their buyers identify and address the cause of their on-farm food loss and its associated impacts, such as scope 3 emissions.

The tool targets the reduction of food loss at one of the most critical points of the global supply chain: on farm. Research from WWF and Tesco shows that as much as 1.2 billion tonnes, around 15% of all food produced, is lost on farms during, around and after harvest worldwide annually. Adding to the challenge, growers and buyers have limited data on the volume of unharvested products to know how much of what’s being left behind is marketable, non-marketable, or spoiled.

The Global Farm Loss Tool provides actionable insights for growers and buyers to map their current loss levels and develop new channels to utilise more of what is grown. The tool can be used to estimate how much surplus (grown to the point of maturity) was left behind in-field post-harvest and at further stages across a farm’s operations (such as processing and packhouse). This first public iteration of the tool can be used for all crops, but especially fruits, vegetables and tree nuts.

Pete Pearson, Senior Director of Food Loss and Waste at WWF said, “We need visibility to identify food loss hotspots and understand the reason behind them. The Global Farm Loss Tool is designed to be part of that solution, helping fill the crucial gap of tracking primary and actionable food loss data at the farm level of global supply chains.”

The CGF supported the beta testing of the Global Farm Loss Tool through its Food Waste Coalition, which brings together 18 of the world’s largest food brands, retailers and manufacturers. The Coalition aims to halve global food loss and waste by 2030, helping to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12.3. Working with Coalition members, the CGF and WWF will continue to assess the impact of the new tool, reviewing how to improve the tool’s user experience, expand its utility in the field and for more food types across the global supply chain, and promote its usage to new growers and suppliers.

Sharon Bligh, Director of Health and Sustainability at the CGF, said, “Growers are vital to helping ensure a sustainable food system. The CGF is committed to supporting our members to help growers in their supply chains to track, address and ultimately reduce the footprint of agriculture. This data is essential for accelerating our transition to a more efficient and circular food system.”

The Global Farm Loss Tool is compatible with existing reporting programmes, including World Resources Institute’s (WRI) 10x20x30 and WRAP’s Food Waste Atlas, and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization’s Food Loss Index. Endorsed by the food loss experts at Champions 12.3, the tool will also be integrated into existing farm sustainability reporting frameworks, such as Sustainable Food Trust’s Global Farm Metric, and develop new capabilities to estimate the scope 3 emissions associated with on-farm food loss in the year ahead.

The tool is now available free of charge to growers and farmers worldwide at GlobalFarmLossTool.org.

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About World Wildlife Fund

WWF is one of the world's leading conservation organizations, working in nearly 100 countries for over half a century to help people and nature thrive. With the support of more than 5 million members worldwide, WWF is dedicated to delivering science-based solutions to preserve the diversity and abundance of life on Earth, halt the degradation of the environment and combat the climate crisis. Visit https://www.worldwildlife.org to learn more and keep up with the latest conservation news by following @WWFNews on Twitter and signing up for our newsletter and news alerts here.

For more information, contact Lorin Hancock [email protected].

About The Consumer Goods Forum

  • The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) is the only CEO-led organisation that represents both manufacturers and retailers globally. It brings together senior leaders from more than 400 retailers, manufacturers and other stakeholders across 70 countries.
  • The CGF accelerates change through nine Coalitions of Action: forests, human rights, plastics, healthier lives, food waste, food safety, supply chains, product data and net zero.
  • Its member companies have combined sales of EUR 4.6 trillion and directly employ nearly 10 million people, with a further 90 million related jobs estimated along the value chain. It is governed by its Board of Directors, which comprises more than 55 manufacturer and retailer CEOs.
  • For more information, please visit: www.theconsumergoodsforum.com

For more information, contact Louise Chester at [email protected].

Additional Statements of Support

“At McCain Foods, we are committed to sustainability throughout our entire supply chain. We are proud to have been involved in testing WWF’s Global Farm Loss Tool alongside two of our growers. This valuable tool will be instrumental for our partners as we work to identify and reduce food loss from the field, a key step in improving the resource use efficiency of our global food system.” — Max Koeune, President and CEO, McCain Foods and Co-Sponsor of The Consumer Goods Forum Food Waste Coalition of Action

“As an industry, we must continue to increase efforts to tackle food loss and waste throughout the entire supply chain, including on-farm. At Tesco, we are proud that over 100 of our growers are now measuring and tackling their in-field and production food loss, and through collaboration with WWF, many have contributed to the testing of the Global Farm Loss Tool. With collaboration across retailers, farmers and suppliers, we can help identify the causes of post-harvest food loss and reduce its environmental impact, while getting more of the food we grow to humans.” — Ken Murphy, CEO of Tesco and Co-Sponsor of The Consumer Goods Forum Food Waste Coalition of Action

“Walmart is proud to be part of this work to scale harmonized reporting of food loss and waste across the value chain. The Global Farm Loss Tool will help elevate the voice of the farmer to support measurement upstream and quantify environmental and financial benefits from food waste reduction initiatives during harvest. Walmart is already seeing benefits from using this tool with whole chain assessment projects conducted last year to identify food waste hot spots and take action.” Chris Franke, Senior Manager, Global Sustainability, Walmart, and Co-Chair of The Consumer Goods Forum Food Waste Coalition

“Better data and insights on food losses at the primary production stage and their root causes and drivers is pivotal for developing effective strategies for prevention and reduction. At Wageningen University, we foresee this becoming ever more important under the influence of climate change and reduced use of pesticides. We need to organize an integrated, systems approach that includes farm-level actors.” — Sanne Stroosnijder, Programme Manager at Wageningen Food & Biobased Research

“WRAP has been working on farm-stage food waste for 10 years, and we feel that the collaborative efforts in developing the Global Farm Loss Tool will lead to impactful reductions in food loss and waste across supply chains. The need for a circular food system and systemic change has never been more urgent and we’re excited to see how this can help farmers unlock the potential in this hidden waste.” — Will McManus, Food Waste Specialist, WRAP

"Champions 12.3 advocates the target, measure, act approach to tackling food loss and waste. We need to measure in order to understand where hot spots are so we can target action. Tools like the Global Farm Loss tool will help increase our knowledge of major sources of food loss, so we can develop solutions to benefit farmers as well as the environment." — Liz Goodwin, OBE, Senior Fellow at World Resources Institute and Champions 12.3