What is happening: The World Economic Forum claim that the introduction of sensors to the food supply chain could cut down on waste.
Numbers: The WEF claim sensors could bring a 5-7% reduction in food waste, due to the increased traceability. They also say that, in Sub-Saharan Africa, 35% of fruit and veg in wasted after harvest, processing, or distribution. This value is at 15% in Europe.
Sensors: The traceability provided by sensors would allow the identification of where losses are occurring. This would then allow farmers/distributors/processors to address the issues and cut down on waste.
What did WEF’s report say: “Once the primary causes of food loss and waste have been identified … the appropriate stakeholder can better address the problem. In addition to cost-saving opportunities. These efficiency improvements also make it possible to increase the rate at which food moves through the supply chain, reducing spoilage costs and thereby creating incremental improvements to our supply chain’s ability to meet rising future food demand and improve sustainability.”
What did the Food and Agricultural Organization of the UN say: “In low-income countries, solutions should first and foremost take a producer’s perspective, e.g. by improving harvest techniques, farmer education, storage facilities and cooling chains. In industrialized countries on the other hand, solutions at the producer and industrial levels would only be marginal if consumer education and appropriate stock management at retail level is not in place.”