This publication and accompanying tool support people across the food supply chain, particularly those calculating the water footprint of food and setting science-based targets, to:

  • Better understand and connect food loss and waste reductions with their efforts to reduce systems-wide water use.
  • Calculate and communicate the environmental benefits of FLW reductions.
  • Link those benefits to their science-based water use reduction targets.


These resources lay the foundation for guidance to organisations and governments in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) who are seeking to measure and tackle the water footprint associated with food imports, food waste and redistributed food.


Water is a shared resource that supports our communities and ecosystems and is vital to our food and drink system. Climate change and associated extreme weather events have led to an increase in both drought and flooding and freshwater quality continues to be put at risk largely driven by the agri-food sector.

We also know that food loss and waste is a global issue that has significant impacts on the natural environment, in particular water scarcity and degradation of various water resources.

Today, 25% of freshwater resources used for agricultural production are to irrigate food that ends in the bin. 

 WRAP, Thriving Solutions and City, University of London have joined forces to create a water footprint tool for food loss and waste in the UAE; a country that is acutely aware of the climate and water impacts of FLW. Measuring the water footprint of food loss and waste in the UAE will, we believe, empower individuals, organisations, and governments to make informed decisions, re-evaluate supply chains, and champion sustainable water management that resonates with the UAE’s vision for a greener, more sustainable future.

If you haven’t already, now is the time to commit and play your part.

We look forward to working with businesses, governments and other organisations in the UAE and the Arab region as together we can accelerate progress on reducing the water footprint of our food and drink system and ensure that no good food goes in the bin.

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  • Food loss & waste water footprint calculation tool - Guidance.pdf

    PDF, 11.19 MB

  • Food loss and waste water footprint tool

    XLSX, 19.08 MB