An Overview of the Effect of Covid-19 on Household Food Waste: How Does the Pandemic Affect Food Waste at the Household Level?

Osman Çavuş, Isa Bayhan, Balarabe B. Ismail


The COVID-19 outbreak created one of the largest pandemics globally, with the world health organization (WHO) declaring several measures, including restriction of movement to curtail the spread of the virus. Reducing food waste is critical to achieving healthy nutrition and sustainability in food systems. In this regard, private households have consistently been regarded as key actors in food waste generation. Hence, this study examined the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on food waste in homes. A total of 1098 respondents were asked questions on how the pandemic affected their food preparation and consumption pattern, food purchasing and food waste. Compared with the situation before COVID19, there is a significant increase in kitchen spending and bread-making at home. Moreover, food waste generation and the frequency of eating out and food purchasing were reduced. Waste generation was higher in bakery products, left-over foods, and fruits and vegetables. Respondents suggested prudent meal preparation and consumption, increased awareness, and food purchasing restrictions as measures to reduce food waste. Overall, the pandemic has led to more stringent planning in household spendings and attitudinal changes regarding food preparation and consumption, resulting in a significant reduction in food waste and may have contributed to curtailing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.


COVID-19; Household; Food Waste; Environment; Consumer Survey

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ISSN 1869-6945


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