Quantitative Analysis of Household Food Waste Collection in Warsaw: Assessing Efficiency and Waste Minimization

Piotr Manczarski, Anna Rolewicz-Kalińska, Krystyna Lelicińska-Serafin

Food waste management is one of the key challenges of the circular economy and climate transition policies. The proper collection of food waste is the starting point for its further value recovery. Most of the quantitative and qualitative data used to measure the scale of food waste in households and its collection are based on statistical data, diaries, and questionnaires. There is a visible gap in research in terms of the use of direct research methods. This paper presents the results of a quantitative research study on household food waste accumulation and collection in Warsaw from two sources: single-family and multi-family households. The results of the study indicate that in Warsaw households, one can expect generation at the level of 33.4 kg·capita−1·year−1 of avoidable food waste and 38.2 kg·capita−1·year−1 of unavoidable food waste. The average food waste collection rate from households in Warsaw was determined to be at a level of 19.6 kg·capita−1·year−1. In multi-family buildings, which are dominant in Warsaw, this rate is half as pronounced (17.3 kg·capita−1·year−1) compared to single-family buildings (36.2 kg·capita−1·year−1). The average food waste collection efficiency rate from Warsaw households was at a level of 32%. Avoidable food waste accounted for 47% of all food waste generated. The study indicates a growing need to develop policy tools to support the separate collection and prevention of food waste.

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