Until the end of the 20th century, food loss and disposal of food waste were not evaluated as matters of concern. The prevalent policy was mainly to increase food production, without improving the efficiency of the food systems. This fact increased generation of food lost or wasted along supply chains.
In the 21th century, escalating demands for processed foods have required identification of concrete opportunities to prevent depletion of natural resources, restrict energy demands, minimize economic costs as well as reduce food losses and wastes. Besides, recent changes in the legislative frameworks and environmental concerns have stimulated industry to reconsider their management policy and in some cases to face the concept of “recovery” as an opportunity.
This tendency is becoming a major item for the food industry around the world, as resources become more restricted and demand grows. Indeed, food industry is increasing attention towards sustainability, which has been has been developed into a trendy word characterizing a frame of advances and modernization in the years to come. However, sustainability is neither easy to specify nor to implement.
In theory, it reflects the principle that we must meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. For instance, food processing ensures that the resources required producing raw food materials and ingredients for food manufacturing are used most efficiently. Responding to this goal, sustainability requires the maximum utilization of all raw materials produced and integration of activities throughout all the production-to-consumption stages.
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