What’s Going On Here?
The Danish Government announced plans to incorporate a carbon labeling system on food products as part of their target to become carbon neutral by 2050.
This comes as more of us than ever before are asking our decision-makers to stand up and take notice of climate change. Tell the truth and provide solutions.
What Does This Mean?
What did you have for dinner yesterday? Could better information have changed your decision? What if you were able to compare the environmental impact of a free range egg against a seasonal butternut squash? What if you could compare local veg with their imported cousins? And what if you could do all of this while popping them into your shopping basket and listening to your favourite tunes?
That’s exactly what our friends in Denmark will be doing as the government proposes that all food products clearly indicate their carbon footprint.
Denmark’s Minister for the Environment, Lars Christian Lilleholt, said, “We want to give consumers the means to assess in supermarkets the environmental impact of products.”
Why Should We Care?
Food production is a major cause of energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, a study from the University of Oxford shows that food production is responsible for 25% of all greenhouse gas emissions.
However, the environmental impact of different foods varies hugely. Meat and other animal products are responsible for more than 50% of food-related greenhouse gas emissions.
Therefore diet changes and the behavioural strategies used by government, supermarkets and the food industry are crucial in reducing environmental impacts.
Perhaps the steps taken by the Danish Government will stick. Just as nutrition information helps you pick what’s best for you, a carbon footprint label helps you pick what’s best for the planet.
Here at Curious.HQ we know that working out the carbon footprint of everything we eat and drink can difficult, time consuming, and down right confusing. So to keep things simple, here are our top places to look.
1. Take a look at the BBC’s attractive and simple-to-use food calculator to compare the carbon footprint of your favourite foods.
2. Read the WWF’s top tips on how to eat more sustainably.
3. Read Friends of the Earth’s top tips for choosing less meat and better meat, how to halve food waste, how to support farmers and much more.
4. Read Mike Berners-Lee ‘How bad are bananas’ book to help you discover the real impact of each of things you buy.