380,000 Tonnes of Food Wasted Annually in Croatia

Lauren Simmonds

Not a particularly heartwarming statistic for a country with an alarming level of people going hungry…

Almost 90 million tonnes of food is wasted each year in the European Union, from 28 member states combined, a shocking and hardly justifiable statistic given the fact that so many individuals and families all over the EU are living in poverty, with some literally starving. 

The issue of food waste is a topic that has been thrown around to ”all corners of the room” for a very long time now, the problem stretches widely, from individual people and their waste to enormous supermarket chains and their indiscriminate removal of anything that is anything more than 24 hours out of date. France was commended recently for its positive moves regarding this subject and hopefully more nations will follow its example. 

The western Croatian town of Opatija played host to the Food Safety and Food Quality conference recently, in which data showed a shocking statistic for the Republic of Croatia – approximately 380,000 tonnes of food is wasted each year. The Ministry of Agriculture’s Marija Batinic said that a significant number of shops and supermarkets are worried about donating unsold produce, fearing that it could be somehow interfered with, be improperly distributed or be improperly stored – resulting in possible poisoning, which would of course drag their good names through the mud. Batinic also stated that 53% of still edible food is wasted in households and that (as with many other things in Croatia), the processes both private persons and companies must go through to correctly donate food products is deemed to be too much of a headache for those who are otherwise more than happy to donate unwanted produce.

Several incentives are being ”cooked up” to try to provide some sort of answer to this pressing issue, such as the establishment of food banks, cutting the red tape for those wishing to go through the correct channels for food donations and some sort of tax incentive for companies and businesses who agree to donate food.


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