Autogrill, the multinational company known for its motorway and airport restaurants in 30 countries, is partnering with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to cut down food waste and losses and support the introduction of products of small-scale farmers in developing countries, FAO said in Rome.
Under the three-year agreement, FAO will provide Autogrill with tools to track and reduce food losses and waste across its more than 4,000 stores and design information materials and campaigns to raise awareness among Autogrill customers worldwide about waste reduction.
"We’re excited to collaborate with a major multinational restaurant chain like Autogrill on making its market chain more inclusive," said Eugenia Serova, Director of the Rural Infrastructure and Agro-Industries Division at FAO.
"This is a new type of public-private partnership for FAO which could become a model for collaborations with other retailers in future" she said.
It is estimated that roughly one third of the food produced globally for human consumption – approximately 1.3 billion tonnes every year – is lost or wasted. In recent years, restaurants and food and beverage stores worldwide have become increasingly aware of their role in making food chains more sustainable.
"The public-private partnership belongs to the tradition of Autogrill. From today onward the leading global restaurants chain for the people on the move will continue that tradition jointly with FAO. Our social responsibility awareness will certainly be improved by the relationship we are beginning today," said Luigi Troiani, European Public Affairs Manager of Autogrill Group.
Promoting products produced by small-scale farmers
In addition to tracking and reducing waste, the restaurant chain will also pay attention to the sourcing of its products, in the framework of their corporate social responsibility.
FAO, which has been working with farming cooperatives and producer organisations worldwide to improve small producers’ livelihoods, will help Autogrill identify products and small-scale farmers interested in supplying the global retailer as a way to open new markets to global southern producers.