Italy Ready to Pass Legislation Pushing Vendors Not to Throw out Food

The legislation in Italy is not yet final, but if it were to become law, it would lower the food wasted across the country.

Another country in Europe is joining in on the battle against the wasting of food. A new measure up for vote in Italy encourages vendors to donate unsold, unusable food instead of throwing them away.

The measure arrived this week in the lower house of the Italian Parliament on Monday. This proposal was received with strong support that was bipartisan according to the deputy, Maria Chiara Gadda who presented the legislation.

This week the law is expected to pass in the Chamber of Deputies, after which the measure will go to the Italian Senate for its final approval said La Repubblica a national newspaper.

The text includes food and pharmaceutical products, which are consumable yet unsold because of aesthetic reasons, because they are close to expiration or a lack of demand.

Italy will become the second country in Europe with this form of legislation against wasting food. Last month, France banned food vendors from throwing out or destroying their food that was nearing an expiration date or unsold.

In France, those who violate the law could be fined as much as $4,164.

In Italy, the bill however, hopes to be an incentive for the donations of surplus product by lowering the taxes as well as cutting the red tape for the vendor if they want to give food away, said Deputy Gadda

Gadda noted that at present all entities that want to donate surplus food must declare that five days prior to each donation. Under the latest legislation companies as well as vendors must declare only once per month what the donated already and then be given cuts on trash taxes.

A section of the bill also emphasized that the majority of products can be consumed beyond their expiration or “best before” dates.

Wasted food costs the country of Italy close to $13.3 billion per year, according to the Agricultural Minister Maurizio Martina.