It’s no secret that the concept of food waste management (FWM) is gaining traction with the declaration of food waste reduction as a target in the 2015 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

And now, new analysis from Frost & Sullivan, “Emerging Trends and Opportunities in Food Waste Management,” finds that policies favoring food waste reduction in Europe and North America and the setting of global targets greatly aid the development of FWM technologies.

The present gap between the amount of food waste generated globally and the number of storage and recycling facilities in operation translates to significant opportunities for the development of effective FWM technologies.

Currently, the most popular methods for FWM are composting and anaerobic digestion. However, they do not help salvage unspoiled food from the food waste. These processes can also be energy intensive, substantially reducing the overall environmental benefits of FWM.

"Currently, there is a demand for technologies that can convert food unfit for human consumption to animal feed," says TechVision Research Analyst Lekshmy Ravi. "Technology developers are simultaneously working on repackaging or repurposing food waste to food for human consumption using less energy-intensive solutions and employing novel management models."

There are considerable research and industry initiatives for the conversion of food waste to products such as plastics, fruit juices and food ingredients. Additionally, innovative FWM companies are trying to convert food waste to valuable products such as liquid fuels.

While technology developers are looking to eliminate inefficiencies in FWM, it is also necessary to form strategic partnerships along the various links of the food supply chain. These synergies can help improve the efficiency of FWM and facilitate the exchange of technologies and techniques.

"Eventually, companies are likely to adopt models that enable the efficient and cost-effective extraction of valuable products from food waste," notes Ravi. "Overall, key emerging opportunities are expected to be in the extraction of edible ingredients from food waste, conversion of misshapen fruits to saleable products and conversion of byproducts from food production."

Emerging Trends and Opportunities in Food Waste Management, part of the TechVision subscription, offers a detailed account of FWM's global trends. It discusses various solutions for FWM and studies the various pathways that could be adopted, as well as innovative technology and management solutions. Expert analysts have identified emerging business models for FWM and employed Porter's Five Forces to analyze the various FWM pathways.

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