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With current diets and production practices, feeding 7.6 billion people is degrading terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, depleting water resources, and driving climate change. Today’s food supply chain creates 13.7 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2eq).
Food production creates 32% of global terrestrial acidification (change in soil chemistry) and 78% of eutrophication, which is when water becomes overly enriched with minerals and nutrients which induce excessive growth of algae. 9% of the Earth's surface is land, only 71% of this is habitable. Agriculture uses 50% of habitable land - about 51 million square kilometres, 77% of farmed land is used to farm livestock, which only accounts for 18% of the global calorie supply. Food accounts for over a quarter (26%) of global greenhouse gas emissions. 94% of mammal biomass (excluding humans) is livestock. This means livestock outweigh wild mammals by a factor of 15-to-1. Food waste is responsible for 6% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
"Around one-quarter of the calories the world produces are thrown away; they’re spoiled or spilled in supply chains; or are wasted by retailers, restaurants and consumers."
The United Nations
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing - in a global partnership. They recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.
"By 2030, ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, that help maintain ecosystems, that strengthen capacity for adaptation to climate change, extreme weather, drought, flooding and other disasters and that progressively improve land and soil quality"
What Can We Do?
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save water by eating more plants! When you do choose to eat meat, dairy and eggs, choose products from animals raised sustainably and using regenerative practices.
Eat Local Food
Eating organic/ sustainable/ regenerative food is better than conventionally grown and processed food. Ask your local farmer what practices they use. Local food doesn’t travel so many miles to your plate and is fresh!
Grow Your Own
Growing your own food is a hands-on way to lower your food carbon footprint. A great activity for the entire family!
Start a vegetable garden or grow herbs in a windowsill pot!
Grow Your Own!
Rob Greenfield is an adventurer, environmental activist, humanitarian and dude making a difference. He is dedicated to leading the way to a more sustainable and just world.
Rob is the creator of The Food Waste Fiasco, a campaign that strives to end food waste and hunger in the U.S. He has dove into more than two thousand dumpsters across the United States to demonstrate how nearly half of all food in the U.S. is wasted while 50 million (1 in 7) Americans are food insecure.
Brand In Focus: Beyond Meat
WE BELIEVE THERE’S A BETTER WAY TO FEED OUR FUTURE.
We believe there is a better way to feed our future and that the positive choices we all make, no matter how small, can have a great impact on our personal health and the health of our planet. By shifting from animal to plant-based meat, we can positively impact four growing global issues: human health, climate change, constraints on natural resources, and animal welfare."
Why not make Monday each week a day where you eat only plant-based food!
Plant-based protein sources – tofu, beans, peas and nuts – have the lowest carbon footprint.
In The News
Revisited: is veganism the future?
The Guardian, Mon 28th December 2020
"Marco Springmann, a public health expert, tells Anushka Asthana why cutting out animal products is the best route to a healthy diet – and why veganism is good for the planet.
Veganism is having a moment. From ‘Veganuary’ promotions to whole lines of products in fast-food chains such as KFC and Greggs, there is a concerted effort to lure customers away from meat and dairy. But with the boom comes a deluge of quackery and misinformation."
Wasted: How America Is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill
NRDC, Wednesday 16th August 2017
"In 2012, NRDC published a groundbreaking report that revealed that up to 40 percent of food in the United States goes uneaten. That is on average 400 pounds of food per person every year. Not only is that irresponsible—it’s expensive. Growing, processing, transporting, and disposing that uneaten food has an annual estimated cost of $218 billion, costing a household of four an average of $1,800 annually.
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