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Monash Sustainable Development Institute and OzHarvest announce joint policy brief for urgent action 

to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 12.3

Australia’s climate action and progress towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been widely recognised as lagging behind other countries, and food waste is no exception. A collaborative report between Monash Sustainable Development Institute (MSDI) and leading food rescue organisation, OzHarvest, is urging national action if food waste is to be halved by 2030.

OzHarvest Founder and CEO, Ronni Kahn AO said tackling food waste is an integral part of Australia’s efforts towards sustainable consumption addressed in goal 12.3.  “OzHarvest is committed to halving food waste in Australia and knows the immense size of the challenge we still face.  This report aims to spark a national conversation on what needs to be done and with only nine years to go, the huge changes that are needed from policymakers, businesses and the public.  We’ve collaborated with the brilliant team at Monash, who are experts in tracking Australia’s SDG progress.”

MSDI Chair, Professor John Thwaites AM said the Sustainable Development Goals are a blueprint for a better future, including a focus on tackling food waste. “Australia still has an opportunity to forge collective action on goal 12.3 but will need to act quickly and at scale to see results before 2030. This report is Australia’s shopping list for the essential ingredients to achieve this target, which has great social, economic and environmental benefits and contributes to other SDGs including Zero Hunger and Climate Action.”

The joint report Halving Food Waste: Australia’s progress on SDG 12.3 outlines the benefits of achieving this goal, the foundation work already undertaken and makes key recommendations for national action, including: 

  • Building food waste reduction into national climate policies

  • Applying the ‘Target.Measure.Act’ approach as an enabler for government and businesses to reduce food waste at scale

  • Including food waste in corporate greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies and for businesses to sign up to Australia’s new Food Pact (delivered by Stop Food Waste Australia)

  • Government funded national programs to cut food waste across key sectors

  • State based grant programs to help businesses take action on reducing food waste

  • Scale up food rescue operations across the country and ensure edible surplus food is driven further up the waste hierarchy

  • Inspire consumer action to reduce the 2.5 million tonnes of household food waste 

The report is launched this week to coincide with the UN Food Systems Pre-Summit in Rome, where the focus has been on the power of food systems to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 


For media enquiries contact:

Fiona Nearn | OzHarvest Media | | 0405 588186
Nina Laxmandas | Monash Sustainable Development Institute | | 0411 749 854

Available assets:


Founded by Ronni Kahn in 2004, OzHarvest is Australia’s leading food rescue organisation. Every week over 250 tonnes of food is saved from going to landfill and delivered to 1,500+ charitable agencies, helping to make a positive difference to the lives of vulnerable men, women and children across Australia. OzHarvest’s education programs include: NEST - tailor made workshops that support people in need with nutrition education and life skills, Nourish - a hospitality training program for ‘at risk’ youth, FEAST – a curriculum aligned program for primary school kids and Fight Food Waste – to inspire behavioural change to prevent food waste at home. Since inception it has delivered over 185 million meals and saved over 65,000 tonnes of food from landfill. Every $1 donated allows OzHarvest to deliver two meals to people in need


Monash Sustainable Development Institute (MSDI) works to understand, influence and transform systems to achieve sustainable development and advance the wellbeing of people and the planet for current and future generations. They do this by collaborating with government, industry, academic and civil society partners to build knowledge and capacity and drive practical change.