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Royal Holloway academic leads G20 Policy brief report highlighting urban food security and supply concerns

Royal Holloway academic leads G20 Policy brief report highlighting urban food security and supply concerns

  • Date04 November 2022

Professor David Simon, Professor of Development Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London is Lead Author for an influential policy briefing prepared for the latest G20 leaders’ summit hosted by Indonesia.

T20 Food waste policy brief report cover

The Policy Brief was commissioned as part of a series on relevant themes by the host country, and it combines work undertaken by the Commission on Sustainable Agricultural Intensification (CoSAI), 2020-21, on which Professor Simon was a Commissioner, and by a team at the Stockholm Environment Institute.

The report, ‘Food Waste Minimization and Circularity for Optimizing Urban Food System Resilience’, covers minimisation of food loss and waste, which accounts for some 30% of current global production and is identified as a major threat to food security, and the circular economy in agriculture.

The report recommends that G20 member countries have the resources and multilateral governance capacity to undertake four key interventions, these are (1) the adoption of holistic and circular planning perspectives across the food and waste sectors; (2) the recognition of the role of urban and peri-urban farming; (3) the integration of innovative behavioural interventions; and (4) the provision of enabling environments. Moreover, by so doing, they will set an example that with appropriate publicity and assistance – will encourage other low- and middle-income countries to follow suit.

Professor Simon commented,

“This is the sole policy brief within a suite on agriculture that has an explicitly urban and peri-urban focus. It highlights the growing importance of urban food supply and security issues, focusing innovations and required investment to promote circular economic flows and relationships through innovative ways to minimise food waste by turning it into a valuable resource. “

“A key use for composted food waste is to help maximise the often considerable potential of urban and peri-urban agriculture, thereby boosting urban economic activity and livelihoods, not least among the urban poor, ultimately reducing food miles and enhancing security of food supply.”

The G20 is a strategic multilateral platform connecting the world’s major developed and emerging economies, holding a strategic role in securing future global economic growth and prosperity. Together, the G20 members represent more than 80 percent of world GDP, 75 percent of international trade and 60 percent of the world population.

Since 1999, the G20 has evolved into a yearly summit involving the Head of State and Government. In addition, Sherpa meetings in charge of carrying out negotiations and building consensus among Leaders, working groups, and special events are also organised throughout the year.


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