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Ending want, stopping waste. Cargill and the European Federation of Food Banks fight hunger, food waste.

November 17, 2016

“Waste not, want not.” This proverbial saying, according to, dates back to the 1500s. How alarming it is that more than 500 years later, it is disturbingly relevant to the food security of our world.

Did you know that in Europe today, around 50 million people suffer from hunger and malnutrition while 50 million tons of edible food is wasted each year?* And that the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that almost a third of the world’s consumable food is wasted annually? What a difference it would make if this food were not discarded but made its way to the people who need it.

Organizations like the European Federation of Food Banks (FEBA) are working hard to ensure there is both less want and less waste. Its food banks collect food that otherwise would have been thrown away, and distribute the equivalent of 2.9 million meals every day to hungry people across Europe.

Since 2006, Cargill has globally supported food bank projects through its partnership with the Global Food Banking Network, which includes FEBA and multiple countries across Europe.
Managing large quantities of food that is often collected as surplus from the food and drink industry and can be close to the expiration date when it arrives at food bank warehouses is no easy task. For a food bank manager, this means not only having the knowledge and expertise on how to keep the food they manage safe, but also disseminating that information to the staff and volunteers working every day to feed those in need.”

Cargill is helping by funding a training program that aims to increase the skills and knowledge of food bank managers across Europe. In addition to financially supporting the program, Cargill employees devised and delivered key aspects of the training, especially around food safety and hygiene practices.

“The partnership with Cargill is important for us on many levels,” said Jacques Bailet, president of the Federation of French Food Banks “It allows us to benefit from products that we lack due to their long shelf life, such as oil or chocolate,” he said. “It also allows us to benefit from the expertise of a major player in the food industry, especially in food safety, which is a key area for an organization like ours.”

Learn more about how Cargill is working with partners in Europe to put an end to want –and a fulfilling use to what otherwise would have been waste.

*European Federation of Food Banks