Reducing Food Waste in Norway

May 28, 2013

Contributor: Oslo

Governance, synergies and local systems /   Final consumers: General Public – Low-income Households & multi-ethnic communities – Youngsters
Social inclusion, job creation, economics  /  Eating more sustainably within a limited budget
Resource efficiency – CO2 reduction /  Assessing the footprint of a meal/urban food demand 

 An action and research project with a goal of 25 percent less food waste by 2015

Every year about 300,000 metric tons of food in Norway is thrown away. For Food (Norwegian title “ForMat”) is a business driven initiative to reduce so much wastage. It is funded by a combination of private sector and state organizations working within both the food and beverage industry and environmental protection. A three year project, the end goal is to reduce food waste by not only industry players, but end consumers as well.


The For Food project consists of four parts:

1 – Quantitative analysis, 2010 – 2013: Exactly how much food is wasted in Norway?

2 – Network: Cooperation between businesses within the food and beverage industry, focusing on specific product groups and value chains.

3 – Communication: Results, ideas and knowledge related to reduction of food waste shall be shared via education plans at public day-care and public school education.

4 – Action: Pointed actions within the value chain which reduce food waste.


Part of the For Food project is Food Smart, an interactive web site ( which is administered by For Food, but that allows contributions from the public. It consists of facts and figures, shopping advice, and recipes using common leftovers.

Both the For Food and daughter project Food Smart are well organized, with easy access to a lot useful information. However, the project has only one employee, and is questionable whether the funds supporting the project will lead to the goal of 25 percent waste reduction by 2015. Another challenge is quantifying current waste, a problem that is made more difficult because not all food waste, from catering, for example, is included in the project analysis.


How would you suggest increasing the likelihood of achieving the project goal of 25 percent food waste reduction in Norway?