New French Law Forbids Food Waste By Supermarkets (France has become the first country in the world to ban supermarkets from throwing away or destroying unsold food, forcing them instead to donate it to charities and food banks)

Posted by on January 26, 2017 in Food, Drink & Nutrition, Health with 21 Comments

woman-shopping-fruits-compressed

By Angelique Chrisafis | The Guardian

France has become the first country in the world to ban supermarkets from throwing away or destroying unsold food, forcing them instead to donate it to charities and food banks.

Under a law passed unanimously by the French senate, as of Wednesday large shops will no longer bin good quality food approaching its best-before date. Charities will be able to give out millions more free meals each year to people struggling to afford to eat.


The law follows a grassroots campaign in France by shoppers, anti-poverty campaigners and those opposed to food waste. The campaign, which led to a petition, was started by the councillor Arash Derambarsh. In December a bill on the issue passed through the national assembly, having been introduced by the former food industry minister Guillaume Garot.

Campaigners now hope to persuade the EU to adopt similar legislation across member states.

The law has been welcomed by food banks, which will now begin the task of finding the extra volunteers, lorries, warehouse and fridge space to deal with an increase in donations from shops and food companies.

Supermarkets will also be barred from deliberately spoiling food in order to stop it being eaten by people foraging in stores’ bins. In recent years, growing numbers of families, students, unemployed and homeless people in France have been foraging in supermarket bins at night to feed themselves. People have been finding edible products thrown out just as their best-before dates approached.

Some supermarkets doused binned food in bleach, reportedly to prevent food poisoning from items taken from bins. Other supermarkets deliberately binned food in locked warehouses for collection by refuse trucks.

Now bosses of supermarkets with a footprint of 400 sq metres (4,305 sq ft) or more will have to sign donation contracts with charities or face a penalty of €3,750 (£2,900).

Jacques Bailet, head of Banques Alimentaires, a network of French food banks, described the law as “positive and very important symbolically”. He said it would greatly increase an already emerging trend for supermarkets to donate to food banks.

“Most importantly, because supermarkets will be obliged to sign a donation deal with charities, we’ll be able to increase the quality and diversity of food we get and distribute,” he said. “In terms of nutritional balance, we currently have a deficit of meat and a lack of fruit and vegetables. This will hopefully allow us to push for those products.”

Until now French food banks received 100,000 tonnes of donated goods, 35,000 tonnes of which came from supermarkets. Even a 15% increase in food coming from supermarkets would mean 10m more meals being handed out each year, Bailet said.

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  1. 10106708795127649@facebook.com' Angela Brown says:

    It should be! But probably wont, because the majority are too selfish :/

  2. 10206898547555853@facebook.com' Christine Swank says:

    YES!!!!!!!

  3. 10207512536281083@facebook.com' Irene Tait says:

    It should be law in every country. To much waste.

  4. 966237636747852@facebook.com' Amazing Tattoos Girls says:

    ᵀʰᶦˢ ᶦˢ ˢᵒ ˢᵐᵃᶫᶫ ᵗᵒ ʳᵉᵃᵈ ᵉᵛᵉᶰ ᶠᵒʳ ʸᵒᵘ ᵇʳᵒ⋅ ᴰᵒᶰᵗ ᵗʳʸ ᵗᵒ ᶜᵒᶰᵗᶦᶰᵘᵉ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ ᵗʰᶦˢ ᵇᵉᶜᵃᵘˢᵉ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵉʸᵉˢ ʷᶦᶫᶫ ˢᵗᵃʳᵗ ᵗᵒ ʰᵘʳᵗ ˢᵒᵒᶰ ᶦᶠ ʸᵒᵘ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ˢᵗᵒᵖ⋅ ᵂʰʸ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ˢᵗᵒᵖ﹖⋅⋅⋅⋅ᵍᵒ ᵃʷᵃʸ ᵇʳᵒ ᵃᶰᵈ ʳᵉᵃᵈ ᵗʰᵉ ᶰᵉˣᵗ ᶜᵒᵐᵐᵉᶰᵗ⋅ ˢᵗᵒᵖ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ ᵃᶫʳᵉᵃᵈʸ﹗ ᴵ ˢᵉᵉ ᵗʰᵃᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ʷᵃᶰᶰᵃ ᵍᶦᵛᵉ ᵘᵖ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ﹖⋅⋅⋅ʷᵉᶫᶫ ᵒᵏ, ʸᵒᵘ ʷᵒᶰ ᵗʰᶦˢ ᵗᶦᵐᵉ, ᵇᵘᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ˢʰᵒᵘᶫᵈ ᵍᶦᵛᵉ ᵐᵉ ᵃ ᶫᶦᵏᵉ ᶠᵒʳ ʷᵃˢᵗᶦᶰᵍ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵗᶦᵐᵉ ᵃᶰᵈ ˢᵗʳᵉˢˢᶦᶰᵍ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵉʸᵉˢ ᵗʰᵒ

  5. 450633348462049@facebook.com' Rosemary Frank says:

    Absolutely!

  6. 858989840886762@facebook.com' William Payne says:

    You know now, don’t you, that screwing people IS the business?

  7. 1759982040899687@facebook.com' Rosanne Jannese says:

    Deliberately spoiling food should be a criminal offence when so many people in the world are starving. Well done France – may other countries follow

  8. 436611076526096@facebook.com' Denise Wheeler says:

    Should b welcomed everywhere

  9. 1667214156872548@facebook.com' Linda Hand says:

    Wonderful

  10. 214491942225632@facebook.com' Diana DeBorde says:

    Yes!

  11. 562345120600737@facebook.com' Sylvia Bridges says:

    No, America is so wasteful, they would rather throw food away then give it to the poor. Remember the worker at school who gave a student food because she didn’t have money ? I worked in the school system years ago so I know the waste and it is so sad..!

  12. 10156496845425114@facebook.com' Kattya Ortiz says:

    Debería ser una ley internacional!!!!

  13. 152511568431358@facebook.com' Gin Shade Cook says:

    America is too busy poisoning our people, they would never give food away for free….lmfao

  14. 483489248496322@facebook.com' Steven Hartley says:

    No! Not even the poor likes getting or eating out of date expired or rotten food! The stores will hold on to it until the last possible moment! Moldy bread anyone? How about some meat that may make you sick or send you to a hospital? Or can goods that may do you more harm than good? I have been to a food bank before and I can tell you that it’s no picnic! What the hell are these goody two shoes smoking! Feel free to go as for me I have been there and I say no thank you! I would reather go out and kill something and gut it cook it and eat it. The food at these places is mostly spoiled moldy or rotten.

  15. 1562336660752334@facebook.com' Mandy Thompson says:

    Canada

  16. 1716140158605295@facebook.com' Kathy Laberdee says:

    That sure is a wonderful thought.

  17. 1012336755499601@facebook.com' Christine Pretorius says:

    Everywhere world wide

  18. 543761552454648@facebook.com' Terrie Hansen Morris says:

    What a great idea.

  19. 10208405387397443@facebook.com' Yogesh Anand says:

    Yes. It should b first voluntary n then rule/law looking at the results.

  20. 1159466467404473@facebook.com' Ken Logans says:

    The US is the leader in wast despite what seems to be an annual push to recycle and conserve. From the outside in…GREED.

  21. jeffhand409@yahoo.com' Jeff says:

    “There is still some semblance of humanity left in this treacherous, barbaric planet !” Things are turning away from treacherous & barbaric and quickly becoming benevolence personified. Our time has arrived and we have some clean-up to do but it’s a great time to be alive. It’s always great to hear news like this. We’re winning !

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