Context and Metrics:
We used the carbon conversion metrics published by the Climate Challenge Fund in their Low Carbon Route Map for Food to calculate the amount of carbon saved by Fife Diet members. We extrapolated from the published figures to establish rates of carbon saving per unit of behaviour change (e.g. per kg of compost or percent of organic food consumed). These rates are:
Local food: Each additional 1 percent of your food that comes from the UK saves 1.51kg of CO2e per year.
Organic food: Each additional 1 percent of your food that is produced organically saves 2.25kg of CO2e per year
Composting: Each additional 1kg of compost saves 0.45kg of CO2e per year
Food Waste: Every 1kg reduction in food waste saves 4.5kg of CO2e per year
Eating less meat: Each additional vegetarian meal saves 1.1kg of CO2e per year
Growing your own: Each additional 1m2 of growing space saves 0.9kg of CO2e per year
See here two examples of the average Fife Dieter’s carbon foodprint. If you become a member of the Fife Diet you will receive a personalised carbon foddprint:
“ More than half of the emissions from food come from farming and fishing1. Of these,nearly two-thirds come from animal products which provide only about one third of the food energy in UK food. So on the basis of our food energy, livestock products have nearly twice the carbon footprint of plant based foods.
The result is that consumers who switch to more plant-based diets generally reduce their carbon footprint, particularly if they compensate for the switch by consuming more carbohydrate rich products and in-season fruit and vegetables. Removing meat completely from the diet reduces the food carbon footprint (FCF) by 20 per cent whilst, reducing all livestock products by 50 per cent reduces the FCF by 13 per cent.
We can all reduce emissions too by changing the way we store and prepare food – after farming, refrigeration in particular is a large source of emissions2.”
1Data taken from Audsley E, et al (2009). An assessment of greenhouse gas emissions from the UK food system and the scope for reduction by 2050. How low can we go? WWF UK and the Food Climate Research Network.
2Murphy-Borken, D. (2010). Understanding the carbon footprint of our food. Complete Nutrition Vol.10 No. 5, October 2010.