On 10, 11 and 12 February, the Commission hosted in Brussels the closing session of the first European Citizens’ Panel, allowing citizens to provide their input on how to step up action to reduce food waste in the EU. This is the first of a new generation of Citizens’ Panels launched as a follow-up to the Conference on the Future of Europe, embedding participatory and deliberative practices in the European Commission’s policy-making process on certain key policy areas.
The reduction of waste, and particularly food waste, is the subject of a legislative proposal included in the Commission’s Work Programme for 2023, in line with its Farm to Fork Strategy and the proposals from the Conference of the Future of Europe. At the end of three weekends of deliberations, and attended by around 150 citizens randomly selected to represent the diversity of the European population, the citizens’ panel put forward 23 recommendations aimed at boosting ongoing efforts at reducing food waste, by strengthening cooperation in the food value chain, encouraging relevant initiatives in the food industry and supporting consumer-behaviour change.
The Citizens’ Panel’s recommendations will complement the impact assessment and open public consultation carried out by the Commission on the EU initiative to revise the Waste Framework Directive with binding food waste reduction targets.