Food waste continues to be a major contributor of greenhouse gas emissions globally, yet public policies to address food waste at retail, particularly small and medium-sized food retailers, remain understudied. Two case studies on small Metro Vancouver grocers and a jurisdictional scan of four foreign countries were conducted to understand the current state of food waste mitigation by small grocers; and to identify potential food waste policy interventions appropriate for the sector. The analysis suggests that policy interventions must focus on lowering the barriers that small and medium-sized grocers face, such as a lack of financial resources, awareness, and expertise to prioritize and implement food waste mitigation practices, in a manner according to the food waste solutions hierarchy. Based on these findings, the author offers a variety of policy instruments – regulatory, fiscal, and voluntary agreements – to mitigate food waste in the retail sector.
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Thesis advisor: Zhu, Yushu
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