In 2015 Milan will host the Universal Exposition entitled “Feeding the Planet, Energy for life”. It will focus on nutrition and resource across the world. As we write these lines, there are more than 7.2 billion people on the planet: growing world population is a challenge for us all, and it is our responsibility to participate in meeting it.
Research and innovation will be key in tackling avoidable waste. Polyurethane is crucial to ensuring the safety and efficiency of one of the most important links of the food chain: the cold food chain. From farm to fork, your food will travel in food processing facilities, containers and trucks, cold rooms and display cabinets before reaching your very own refrigerator or freezer and finally laying on your table, ready for consumption. Polyurethane is essential throughout: professional and domestic refrigerating appliances need strong insulation to ensure your food will not get spoiled by temperature changes. Not only does polyurethane ensures this insulation; polyurethanes have also been innovating constantly to ensure that we use less and less energy to preserve our foodstuff. Nowadays, refrigerators are 60% more efficient than 15 years ago. And we are committed to continue ensuring increased comfort and reduced environmental footprint for all users of polyurethane.
European policy-makers are increasingly aware and mobilised on this issue. This month the European Parliament welcomed Franz Fischler, Chair of the EXPO Milano 2015 Scientific Steering Committee: he notably told Members of the European Parliament about the importance of reducing waste to ensure food security. The European Commission was expected to present a proposal on food waste last Summer, and we hope it will soon present a concrete and ambitious proposal.
The coming months leading to EXPO 2015 will be a great opportunity for all of us to think upon our role and responsibility in the food chain. ISOPA will bring to the debate the innovation and performance of the polyurethane industry which makes the cold food chain a key element of tackling food waste in Europe.
If you would like to learn more about the role of polyurethane in the cold food chain, you can have a look at our factsheet.
In the meantime, you can connect with us on Twitter and tell us your story: use the #PUfoodwaste to tell us how you participate in tackling food waste!