The FAO estimates that around one third of global food production is lost or wasted each year, a subject that was at the heart of the most recent World Expo – Expo 2015 Milan, themed “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”. This challenge is a global one – rich countries waste around the same amount of food as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa. At the same time, hunger remains a global problem with around 9% of the world’s population lacking access to sufficient food.
One of the major challenges - and also a solution - is to ensure that available food is directed towards those facing food insecurity. To support such initiatives, Expo 2020 Dubai’s Expo Live Programme selected Second Harvest Japan (‘Marugohan’ meaning circle+food) as one of its Global Innovators. This organisation has created the concept of a food safety net designed to ensure that everyone in Japan has access to the food they need. The approach seeks to reroute the six million tonnes of food discarded in the country every year, and instead direct it towards the tables of those who are lacking.
Worrying about providing enough food is an age-old problem, and a number of factors play a role in preventing everyone from having food security. However, with the growth of initiatives such as Second Harvest Japan, the world can move towards less hunger – and less waste.
The Expo 2020 Dubai Innovation Series is a weekly blog series highlighting some of the creative and world-changing innovations that are being showcased via Expo 2020 Dubai’s programmes and pavilions.
The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) is the intergovernmental organisation in charge of overseeing and regulating World Expos, Specialised Expos, Horticultural Expos and the Triennale di Milano.