Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Food type

Different foods will have different consequences for greenhouse gas emissions, other environmental impacts and for health. This category contains links to research which analyses particular food groups including meat, fruit and vegetables, carbohydrates and dairy products.

9 May 2012

This paper finds that in 2007–2008, oil palm plantations directly caused 27% of total and 40% of peatland deforestation. Under a business as usual (BAU) scenario, by 2020 ∼40% of regional and 35% of community lands will be cleared for oil palm, generating 26% of net carbon emissions.

9 March 2012

The Scottish Aquaculture Research Forum has published a study on Scottish produced suspended mussels and intertidal oysters.

The study considered the cradle-to-gate impacts of the shellfish, from spat collection in the case of mussels, and hatching in the case of oysters, through  growing, harvesting, depuration, and packing ready for dispatch.  To illustrate the carbon impacts of the full life cycle, a scenario is included that,  based on various assumptions, illustrates the potential impacts of distribution, retail, consumption and disposal of the shells. 

29 February 2012

The UK dairy sector has published its first report which looks at the carbon footprints of a selection of British dairy farms with a view to establishing a baseline against which progress can be measured.   The study reveals very substantial differences in the GHG footprints expressed as CO2 eq/kg fat corrected milk, of different farms, and also finds that there is more variation between farms, than between production systems.  It also concludes that there is no one variable (eg milk yield, fertiliser use or energy consumption) that accounts for most of the variation between farms.

24 January 2012

This study, commissioned by the Australian Egg Corporation, investigates the egg industry’s impacts in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, energy and water use. It looks at both caged and free range egg production.

16 January 2012

France’s Constitutional Council has approved a tax on sugary drinks. The tax, which works out to one euro cent per can of drink, is expected to bring in 120 million euros ($156 million) in state revenues.

6 December 2011

John Forster, an FCRN mailing list member, has written two very interesting articles on aquaculture for the UK Research Councils’ Food Security website www.foodsecurity.ac.uk

18 November 2011

In June 2011, Arla Foods launched its Global Environmental Strategy 2020, which maps the entire environmental impact of its dairy products and includes a pledge to reduce global CO2 emissions by 25% by 2020 within the areas of production, haulage and packaging.

3 March 2011

This should get you out into the garden.  If you don’t want to get your hands dirty, you can buy a half dozen chocolate coated ants or worms at Fortnum and Mason’s for a mere £7. 

3 March 2011

This paper is by some of the same authors who wrote a paper for Friend of the Earth (see mailing of 23/10/10) which modelled the health impact of a lower meat diet. You can read the FoE report here.

The FOE report essentially argues that a lower meat diet would deliver major health improvements largely because it assumes that a reduction in meat intakes will be compensated for by an increase in fruit and vegetables – which of course may or may not be the case.

17 January 2011

This paper considers what we know about the contribution that the fruit and vegetable sector makes to the UK's greenhouse gas emissions. It also looks at what we know about the options for achieving emissions reductions.

17 January 2011

This paper looks at the alcohol we consume here in the UK. It considers whether we can quantify in ‘good enough’ terms the contribution that our alcohol consumption makes to the UK’s total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. 

20 June 2010

Pelletier N, Pirog R, Rasmussen R (2010). "Comparative life cycle environmental impacts of three beef production strategies in the Upper Midwestern United States", Agricultural Systems 103 (2010) 380–389  This paper compares three US beef rearing systems. Cattle are finished either in: feedlot systems (having received hormone implants); backgrounding systems (also with hormone implants); or on pasture (no implants).

1 December 2009

Premier Foods (manufacturers of brands such as Hovis, Sharwoods, Mr Kipling, Quorn, Ambrosia, Angel Delight, Bisto, Cadbury, etc) is moving forward its target on 100% sourcing of sustainable palm oil. The original target (made in 2008) was to source all its palm oil from sustainable sources by 2011. The target has now been moved forward to the end of 2010.

11 November 2009

WWF has produced a 'Scorecard' assessment of the palm oil purchasing practices of major European companies that produce or sell everyday consumer products. Companies were scored on their palm oil sustainability practices in a two-step process. First, WWF evaluated company performance based on publicly available data in relation to the following four questions:

4 November 2009

In November 2009 the World Watch Institute released a report arguing that the FAO's estimate of livestock's total contribution to global GHG emissions (18%) is a serious underestimate and that the true footprint of livestock production is around 51% higher.

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