Advancing consumer education
The aim of consumer education is to guide consumers to acquire knowledge and skills, link them to appropriate behavior for safe consumer life. Consumer education also has an aspect as an activity of fostering people capable of coming forward to play a key role in society and contribute to its growth.
In December 2012, the Act on Promotion of Consumer Education came into force for the purpose of promoting consumer education in a comprehensive and integrated fashion.
The "Basic Policy on the Promotion of Consumer Education"(decided by the Cabinet, June 2013), which was developed pursuant to this Act, states that the national government and local governments should provide opportunities so that anyone, regardless of where he or she lives, can access consumer education in various settings, including school, home, community and workplace, throughout a lifetime from young age to elderly.
Efforts to reduce food loss and waste
Food loss and waste that, though good to eat, gets thrown out, is estimated to amount to approximately 6.12 million tons (estimated in FY2017) of approximately 25.5 million tons of annual food disposal in Japan.
About half amount of the food loss and waste is generated by general households and comes largely from direct disposal, leftovers and excess removal.
An amount of food loss and waste generated per capita is estimated as much as about 48 kg per year.
The Consumer Affairs Agency has launched knowledge-promoting and education campaigns in order that consumers recognize the importance of reducing food loss and waste and to take actions from a MOTTAINAI (means "What a waste!" express regret over this waste) point of view.
"Direct disposal" means the discarded food as it is, without being used or provided as an ingredient for cooking or food products, for example being past the freshness date.
"Leftovers" means the discarded food without being eaten while being used or provided as a meal.
"Excess removal" means discarding eatable parts of food exceedingly at the time of removal for uneatable parts, such as when peeling the skin from a potato.