Food Waste Facts

OzHarvest is passionate about minimising food waste and protecting our environment for future generations. Here’s why…


The World:

  • There is enough food produced in the world to feed everyone. [1]
  • One third of all food produced is lost or wasted –around 1.3 billion tonnes of food –costing the global economy close to $940 billion each year.[2]
  • One in nine people do not have enough food to eat, that’s 793 million people who are undernourished.[3]
  • If one quarter of the food currently lost or wasted could be saved, it would be enough to feed 870 million hungry people.[4]
  • Almost half of all fruit and vegetables produced are wasted (that’s 3.7 trillion apples). [5]
  • 8% of greenhouse gases heating the planet are caused by food waste.[6]
  • If food waste was a country, it would be the third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases after USA and China.[7]
  • Eliminating global food waste would save 4.4 million tonnes of C02 a year, the equivalent of taking one in four cars off the road. [8]
  • Throwing away one burger wastes the same amount of water as a 90-minute shower.


In Australia:

  • The Government estimates food waste costs the Australian economy $20 billion each year. [9]
  • Over 5 million tonnes of food ends up as landfill, enough to fill 9,000 Olympic sized swimming pools.[10]
  • One in five shopping bags end up in the bin = $3,800 worth of groceries per household each year.[11]
  • 35% of the average household bin is food waste. [12]
  • Nearly four million people experience food insecurity each year, one quarter are children.[14]
  • Over 710,000 people rely on food relief each month, one quarter are children.[14]
  • Regional and remote communities are being hit the hardest and are a third more likely to experience food insecurity than those living in capital cities.[14]




[1] 2016 World Hunger and Poverty Facts and Statistics

[2] FAO Save Food Global Food Waste and Loss Initiative

[3] FAO The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015

[4] FAO The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015


[6] FAO Food Wastage Footprint Report 2013

[7] FAO Food Wastage Footprint Report 2013






[13] ACOSS Poverty in Australia 2016

[14] FoodBank Hunger Report 2018