Knowledge for better food systems

Energy Use for Cooking

Carlsson-Kanyama examines energy use in the cooking of a variety of different starchy foods in "Energy Use for Cooking and Other Stages in the Life Cycle of Food: A study of wheat, spaghetti, pasta, barley, rice, potatoes, couscous and mashed potatoes", FMS report no.160, Annika Carlsson-Kanyama, Environmental Strategies Research Group and Kerstin Bostrom-Carlsson, Swedish Consumer Agency, Stockholm University / systemekologiochfoi, January 2001.
Carlsson-Kanyama examines energy use in the cooking of a variety of different starchy foods in "Energy Use for Cooking and Other Stages in the Life Cycle of Food: A study of wheat, spaghetti, pasta, barley, rice, potatoes, couscous and mashed potatoes", FMS report no.160, Annika Carlsson-Kanyama, Environmental Strategies Research Group and Kerstin Bostrom-Carlsson, Swedish Consumer Agency, Stockholm University / systemekologiochfoi, January 2001. The study compared differences in electricity consumption both by the different food types, and by differences in portion size (cooking for one or four portions) and cooking appliance (oven, hob, microwave, kettle). The study also estimates the energy use in the life cycle stages before cooking. It concludes that energy use for cooking can be a large or dominating part in the energy use for some foods, usually those of vegetable origin with a low to medium degree of processing. Electricity use is greatly influenced by the choice of cooking appliance and the number of portions cooked. For example a microwave oven can be up to ten times more energy efficient than a conventional oven for baking potatoes. It is always more energy efficient to cook several portions at the same time. The study concludes that there is great potential for improving the energy efficiency of diets by adjusting the choice of food ingredient and the cooking method.
 

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