Hunger is considered to exist only in poor countries, and the common belief of what causes hunger is just the lack of food. Even though most people assume that hunger is the consequences of inefficient food production, that’s usually not the case. Even the poorest areas in the world have enough raw food to feed people. In Kenya, sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and even in the U.S and Europe, there are nearly 800 million hungry people because food is mainly out of reach. Therefore, the actual problem is about distributing food to all of the people who are looking for it.
1. Inefficient distribution
Researches from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations have shown that a large amount of food can be wasted or lost during the consumption stage of the value chain. And hunger is the problem of inefficient distribution, which leads to the global food waste. As 50% of food is wasted in distribution, according to “The Real Reason There’s World Hunger: Food Waste, Not Food Shortages”, logistics and transportation management has an essential role in ensuring food security and minimizing negative impacts of it on global climate change.
As logistics plays a crucial role in contributing to sustainable food security, the inefficiencies in food supply chain, such as: transportation, packaging, international shipping, customs clearance, tracking and visibility need to be improved to reduce agricultural produce waste. There are also some other constraints in logistics, such as: complex value chain systems that lead to higher risks of poor storage, food losses or freight movement like road safety, noise, air pollution, location also affects the way food are distributed and the quality of food. Cold storage facilities also contribute to the greenhouse effect by using diesel-based electricity and emit a large amount of gas in operation.
2. Logistics improvement
Even though it is not difficult to be aware that logistics improvement helps feed people and decrease the amount of land needed to producing food, the remained question is: How? To make the food supply chain more efficient in food distribution and reduce hunger issue, an enormous progress has been made in reducing the losses from the field to the table by the development of technology in supply chain management.
Some of the solutions to reduce food waste and minimize the environmental impact through the use of technology innovation are:
To solve cold-storage problem in remote places, we can replace electric-used facilities by solar-powered mobile refrigeration methods to reduce the use of fossil fuels to produce electricity.
Another solution is to optimize the logistic management. There are softwares which can solve the transportation issues and optimize the use of capital. One of them is our proprietary Route Optimization Algorithms, called Abivin vRoute, save supply chain management activities time and costs, automate all manual processes, as well as improve supply chain visibility. Abivin’s Transportation Management Module helps solve more than 20 parameters, including complicated conditions such as load planning, multimodal transport, temperature control, traffic and road constraints. This kind of technology advancement is fundamental to maximizing efficiency in ensuring greater food security and minimizing environmental impacts.
The long-term solution is to build sustainable logistics by reducing carbon emission. There can be 80% reduction of CO2 emissions when transporters change the use of trucks to rail or pipeline, electricity-based to solar-powered transport refrigeration units, as well as make use of dry-bulk storage packaging. There is a special initiatives collaborated with the United Nations World Food Programme. The purpose of this project is to save more food from rain and animals by providing better food storage facilities instead of using traditional gunny sacks in Uganda. This is a practical method to eliminate food loss.
It is a good sign that governments are focusing on sustainable economic growth, highlighting the proper use of natural resources, minimizing environmental impacts and reducing poverty. Sustainable logistics and transportation are fundamental factors in addressing food security and climate change. Therefore, It is highly likely that effective logistics management solutions using environmental-friendly energy or technology can reduce food waste, minimize hunger while maximize returns for farmers, and limits negative impacts on the environment. By using these solutions, we can give food to the people who are hungry and avoid food getting spoiled and surely to invest more in optimizing supply chain management, as it needs more attention from logistics organizations and the government.
Abivin vRoute can automatically generate optimal routes that satisfy more than 20 parameters including load capacities, multiple time windows, cross-docking, truck and bike delivery. In addition, the application provides geo-track vehicles in a real-time map, get geo-fencing alerts and mobile ePOD to update delivery progress that can contribute to green logistics and reduce hunger by ensuring the food is distributed on time with less costs.