Have you ever heard the saying, “Earth loves you, so love it back”? A recent study shows that our food production system doesn’t seem to be taking this into account. Currently, it makes up a whopping 25 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and takes up 50 percent of Earth’s habitable surface. When you take a hard look at the environmental impacts of food, the facts are alarming.
Take the production of beef (for meat), for example, which produces the highest GHGs—more than doubling any other food product. It accounts for almost 100kg of GHGs per kilogram of food product. Additionally, roughly 25 percent of the Earth’s surface—enough to feed 1.5 billion people—is already degraded so badly that it’s no longer sustainable for food production. With these stats alone, it can be tough to know where to start.
Recently, President Biden announced a new target for the United States to cut its 2005-level GHG emissions by 50 to 52 percent by 2030. This is great news—but we still have a lot of work ahead of us.
Why not start small? We all know that small changes add up to make a big difference, so start looking to the impact you can have as an individual, and how it can lead to great change around you.
In your day-to-day life, look to some of these options to help reduce food waste and make positive food production changes:
- switch to a plant-forward diet
- buy only what you need (meal planning can help determine exactly how much food you need to buy in your weekly grocery shopping)
- take or request smaller portions, so less will be discarded
- use up everything in your fridge
- grow your own food
- urge your local grocery stores and favorite restaurants to take part in a waste reduction program and donate extras to food banks or shelters
Let’s work together to spread some hope to our beloved Earth. Just maybe, if we show it some love, it’ll love us right back.
We have the power to help reduce food waste <and> our carbon footprints, including looking within our local communities. One way is to check out community farms and partake in a CSA. By buying a share in the coming year’s harvest, customers receive a regular delivery or pick-up of fresh vegetables, and sometimes fruit, eggs, dairy, meat, or honey.
Are you going to try and make one change? Share with us on Instagram and Facebook @deliciouslivingmag. You’ll find plenty of support within our community of like-minded wellness enthusiasts!