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August 2018

Press Contact:

Anne Meerboth-Maltz
Tel. (312)781-5185
Fax (312) 781-5188

Messe Düsseldorf North America
150 North Michigan Avenue
Suite 2920
Chicago, IL 60601


“Fixing Food Waste: What does it take?” was the theme of the United Nations Environment’s panel discussion on July 17, bringing together high-profile guests. An important topic was also the soup kitchen project from Italian Michelin star chef Massimo Bottura. Bernd Jablonowski, Global Portfolio Director for Processing & Packaging at Messe Düsseldorf, gave a keynote speech to provide an overview of the SAVE FOOD initiative.

The event was part of the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) 2018 program from United Nations Environment, which discussed sustainability issues from many different perspectives from July 9 - 18 in New York. Erik Solheim, Executive Director and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, opened the meeting, followed by a speech from the Italian three-star Michelin chef Massimo Bottura. He worked together with partners and other chefs to create soup kitchen projects (refettorios) within the scope of the Food for Soul initiative. The kitchen projects help people in need to access high-quality meals which are made from surplus ingredients from haute cuisine restaurants. This concept was implemented at the Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Other locations all over the world are now set to follow suit. The participants could get an idea of the lively concept from the documentary film “Theater of Life”, which follows Bottura’s work.

A variety of UN experts for the environment, climate and agriculture as well as industry representatives attended the panel discussion afterwards. Jennifer McLean, COO of City Harvest, a New York food bank which takes excess food from a large food trade fair and distributes it among the needy, was also present.

Bernd Jablonowski spoke about how the loss and waste of food translates into massive consumption of resources in his concluding keynote speech. Combating this problem is an ideal starting point for promoting sustainability and in order to be successful the powers from political, social and industrial sectors need to be combined. Throughout the HLPF 2018, participants were able to learn about the work done by the SAVE FOOD initiative.

The SAVE FOOD Initiative is a cooperation between the world food program of the United Nations, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization), the United Nations’ Environment Program (UNEP) and Messe Düsseldorf launched to fight worldwide food loss and waste. SAVE FOOD seeks to network between the relevant players in business, politics and research, stimulating dialogue and help to find solutions along the food value-added chain. Another goal is to initiate and promote own SAVE FOOD projects with the support of the industry. In May 2011, SAVE FOOD was launched with an international congress and exhibition as part of interpack, the world’s leading trade fair for the packaging sector and associated processing industry. More information at:

For SAVE FOOD photos:

Messe Dusseldorf North America Located at 150 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL. Phone: 312-781-5180. .