Food Security

, Volume 10, Issue 5, pp 1279–1290 | Cite as

Generation of food waste in the hospitality and food retail and wholesale sectors: lessons from developed economies

  • Ali Chalak
  • Chaza Abou-Daher
  • Mohamad G. AbiadEmail author
Original Paper


Food wastage is a major challenge in the global food value chain. In an attempt to explain and better understand the determinants of food waste across the supply chain, this paper closely examines the Hospitality, Restaurants and Canteens/Cafeterias (HORECA) as well as food retail and wholesale sectors, as being interrelated with the final consumer at the post-harvest and post-processing levels. Data from 33 developed countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Oceania were compiled from secondary sources and analyzed by means of a regression model in order to identify the macroeconomic factors contributing to generation of food waste in the HORECA industry at the national level. The results of our analysis suggest that a well-defined and inclusive legislative framework, awareness campaigns as well as fiscal incentives significantly reduce generation of food waste by an average of 17.6, 21.3 and 14.3%; respectively. Accordingly, these measures can be used in conjunction as effective schemes for controlling food wastage in the HORECA industry. On the other hand, non-legally binding initiatives by government authorities among other actors did not seem to have any significant impact on the food waste generated and quantities reported.


Food waste HORECA Fiscal initiative Legislation Legally non-binding initiatives 



This study was funded by the University Research Board (URB) at the American University of Beirut and the National Council for Scientific Research-Lebanon.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. and International Society for Plant Pathology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Agriculture, Faculty of Agricultural and Food SciencesAmerican University of BeirutBeirutLebanon
  2. 2.Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural and Food SciencesAmerican University of BeirutBeirutLebanon

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