Food Loss

Food losses refer to the decrease in edible food mass throughout the part of the supply chain that specifically leads to edible food for human consumption. Food losses take place at production, post-harvest and processing stages in the food supply chain. Food losses occurring at the end of the food chain (retail and final consumption) are rather called “food waste”, which relates to retailers’ and consumers’ behavior.

Global Warming Potential (GWP)

An index (i.e., a relative measure) of how much heat a greenhouse gas traps in the atmosphere over a chosen time horizon, relative to that of carbon dioxide. The GWP represents the combined effect of the differing times these gases remain in the atmosphere and their relative effectiveness in absorbing outgoing thermal infrared radiation. Although the most common time horizon is 100 years, GWP have been reported also for time horizons of 20 years and 500 years.

Life Cycle Assessment

LCA addresses the environmental aspects and potential environmental impacts (e.g. use of resources and the environmental consequences of releases) throughout a product's life cycle from raw material acquisition through production, use, end-of-life treatment, recycling and final disposal (i.e. cradle-to-grave). There are four phases in an LCA study: a) the goal and scope definition phase, b) the inventory analysis phase, c) the impact assessment phase, and d) the interpretation phase (ISO 2006).


Lack of proper nutrition, caused by not having enough to eat, not eating enough of the right things, or being unable to use the food that one does eat (see more on Wikipedia).

Research (Applied)

Study directed toward gaining (scientific) knowledge to meet a recognized need


The capacity of a system to buffer shock and stresses. The ability to recover from setbacks, adapt well to change, and keep going in the face of adversity.


Sustainability is a holistic concept that built on three inter-related pillars: environmental, social and economic. To be sustainable, any entrepreneurial activity must be economically viable, ecologically healthy and socially equitable. A universal definition of sustainability was given for the first time by the World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) in the Brundtland report published under the auspices of the United Nations in 1987.

Sustainable Intensification

Narrowly defined, SI refers to increase food production from existing farmland in ways that place far less pressure on the environment and that do not undermine our capacity to continue producing food in the future. However, Garnett et al. (2013) added the following four premises underlying SI: (a) The need to increase production; (b) Increase production must be met through higher yields because increasing the area of land in agriculture carries major environmental costs; (c) Food security requires as much attention to increasing environmental sustainability as to raising productivity; and (d) SI denotes a goal but does not specify a priori how it should be attained or which agricultural techniques to deploy.

Total Mixed Ration (TMR)

Refers to the practice of loading pre-determined amounts of all feed ingredients and blending them in a mixer, followed by delivery to a group of cows, usually housed and managed in confinement. Typically a dairy nutrition consultant will make recommendations using least-cost ration formulation software to determine the amounts and type of feed to blend based on economic considerations (minimizing feed cost), while providing the lactating cows with all know nutrients required for health and high milk production performance.