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30 October 2013  

PPI Platform launch offers exciting new resource for procurers

With Europe’s economy facing serious challenges, there is a need to find innovative and sustainable solutions to stimulate the market. Recognising this, ICLEI has co-developed the Procurement of Innovation Platform, an online hub that helps public authorities, procurers, policy makers, researchers and other stakeholders harness the power of Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI) and Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP). The platform has been developed with support from the European Commission, and in partnership with PIANOo, REC and IWT. It will be launched today at a high-level event in Brussels (Belgium) on 29 October 2013.

“Public procurement of sustainable and innovative goods and services is one of the essential tools for stimulating new technological or service solutions while helping to create jobs and boosting the competitiveness of the European industry and SMEs. It also encourages more efficient public services.” said Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the EC and European Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship. Custom-made to meet user’s needs, the Procurement of Innovation Platform is comprised of three elements: Website, Procurement Forum, and Resource Centre.

The website contains the latest news on PPI and PCP developments and events, as well as policy support, and background information on the European legal framework. The Procurement Forum is a networking space for procurers and stakeholders from around Europe. The Resource Centre provides a database for PPI guidance, making useful documents accessible in one place. In addition, the platform will provide hands-on support. A series of training courses will focus on tools and techniques, while an experience exchange programme will be held between public authorities. European local authorities will also be invited to apply for the Public Procurement of Innovation Award, to be presented to those that purchase innovative, effective and efficient products and services.

For more information, or to sign up to the Platform, visit

21 October 2013  

Subtly reducing food waste

A couple of simple cues could make people waste substantially less food in places such as hotels, schools, and hospitals, researchers say. The study “‘nudging’ hotel guests to reduce food waste as a win-win environmental measure”, tackled one of the most notorious spots for food waste: the buffet. For about six weeks in 2012, seven hotel restaurants offered their diners smaller plates. Another seven hotel restaurants posted a sign saying, “Welcome back! Again! And again! Visit our buffet many times. That’s better than taking a lot once.” The study authors reasoned that this suggestion would prompt people to take smaller portions rather than loading up their plates with food they couldn’t finish.

For more information, click here.

15 October 2013  

Discerning diners

The new report for the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), The Discerning Diner: How consumers’ attitudes to eating out have become more sophisticated, based on the findings of consumer research, finds that diners want to know more about how restaurants operate and more than half will pay more for a meal in a restaurant that is run sustainably.

For more information, click here.

1 October 2013  

Food chain partners join forces to tackle food waste

On the 25 June 2013, representatives from across Europe’s food supply chain announced the launch of a joint effort to tackle the major societal problem of food wastage via the publication of their Joint Declaration entitled, ‘Every Crumb Counts’.

With the long-term sustainability of the food chain foremost in mind, and conscious of the global environmental impact of food disposal such as an increase in greenhouse gas emissions, co-signatories commit to contribute to the objective of reducing food wastage throughout the entire food supply chain, in line with the European Commission’s goal of halving edible food waste by 2020, set out in the Europe 2020 Flagship Initiative ‘A resource-efficient Europe’. Furthermore, the Joint Declaration explores how new markets and better food recovery can contribute to economic growth.

For more information, click here.