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Eating exotic and out-of-season fruits and vegetables is killing the planet

Cherries, illustration.

June 22, 2022 at 4:12 p.m.,

Reading time: 1 minute


Transporting food from its place of production to our plates generates at least three times more greenhouse gas emissions than previously estimated. This is the finding of a study published by nature food relayed Monday, June 20 by the English newspaper The Guardian.

According to the study authors, the food miles » are probably responsible for about 6 % of global greenhouse gas emissions, with the transport of food for human consumption generating 3 billion tonnes of equivalent annually CO2.

The scientists analyzed seventy-four countries and regions, and thirty-seven different types of food. They found that the richest countries accounted for 46 % of emissions due to kilometers traveled by food, when they represent only 12.5 % of world population.

Eating local is ideal »

Fruits and vegetables produce the most emissions from food miles, as they often require refrigeration and consumers demand out-of-season foods. Professor David Raubenheimer, of the University of Sydney (Australia), co-author of the study, told the Guardian that research aimed at making food production more sustainable tended to focus on comparing plant-based and meat-based diets. Our study shows that in addition to moving towards a plant-based diet, eating local is ideal, especially in wealthy countries »he specified.

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