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Global food waste perceived and actual by key country 2018

This statistic shows the share of food that is wasted globally, both the share that is perceived by the consumer and the actual value. In 2018, the average household in the United States estimated that they wasted 15 percent of purchased food but actually wasted 24 percent of their food items.

Share of perceived and actual food wasted worldwide in 2018, by select country

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Release date




Survey time period


Number of respondents


Age group

22-60 years

Special properties

heads of households in 20 countries

Supplementary notes

The survey included 1,000 people in the USA, 2,000 in Germany, 2,000 in France, 1,500 in Sweden and 500 to 800 participants from other countries.

The participants were asked to keep track of their wasting habits during a period of six months - in doing so, they had to take into account grocery shoppings that went directly to the bin as well as leftovers.

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Statistics on "Food waste in the U.S."

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