The SAVE FOOD initiative welcomes its first member from China. The Xiamen Changsu Industrial Company is one of the biggest manufacturers of flexible packaging in the People’s Republic, claiming to be the global leader in biaxially oriented polyamide films (BOPA). A BOPA film usually serves as a barrier in packaging to prevent interaction between the content and the environment and thus to ensure a longer shelf life. The company has stateof-the-art facilities in Xiamen, Fujian Province, and is now seeking to contribute its technical and material expertise and ideas to the SAVE FOOD community.
Food loss and waste are pressing issues in China as indeed almost everywhere in the world. According to a study by the Institute of Agricultural Economics Research at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, 35 million tonnes of food are lost each year before they reach the consumer. For rice alone the figure is as high as 7.5 million tonnes. Moreover, due to the banqueting culture among wealthy Chinese and in business, the rate of food waste in the catering industry is approximately 19 per cent. In 2013 the government therefore launched an advertising campaign with TV spots, under the slogan “Clean your plate”.
Set against the background of limited water resources in the People’s Republic, such large amounts of food loss and waste are rather critical. China has 21 per cent of the global population, but only six per cent of the world’s water resources.
The number of SAVE FOOD members in industry is currently over 140. In addition, there are about 230 NGOs and research institutes that are registered with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).