In an era where climate change is not just data to scare people, but a harsh reality, we are becoming more and more aware of the actual environmental situation. In particular, food production accounts for over a quarter (26%) of global greenhouse gas emissions, and half of what is considered habitable land (ice and desert free) is used for agriculture and farming. Irresponsible farming land to the depletion of natural resources such as uncontrolled deforestation, lack and contamination of water supply, and threatens biodiversity. Considering these notions our food choices can make a big impact on the future of our planet. Sustainable eating is a way to help out our planet, a combination of bigger and smaller choices that add up to making a big difference.
Here are some tips on how to approach sustainable eating and how it can change your impact:
Due to the increasing meat demand 94% of non-human mammals and 71% of poultry live in intensive farming factories, causing an immense consumption of water, land, and electricity. For example, bovine meat is the food with the highest production of greenhouse emissions (59.57 kg per kg of food). Prioritizing the consumption of plant-based food lowers your carbon footprint since agriculture requires fewer resources to be maintained.
Pro tip: if you cannot renounce meat buy it from your local butcher, usually smaller production focuses more on the health of the animals and the environment. Regarding seafood look for certifications like MSC and ASC, that guarantee sustainably sourced fish.
By consuming local and seasonal food you promote a short and ethical food chain. Purchase from local farmers' markets and support farms that prioritize sustainable and ethical practices, such as rotational grazing and integrated pest management. In addition, preferring organic products supports environmentally friendly agricultural businesses, that avoid pesticides and chemicals. Looking for non-GMO labels is a boost to help greener cultivations. Thanks to these choices you are going to reduce the emission due to transportation and storage, decreasing the quantity of resources necessary to grow your food. In addition, you will help to develop a circular economy and reinforce the sense of community in your area.
Pro tip: if you cannot buy certain food from a local producer try to look for Fair Trade-certified products, this international label assures you that the food is produced under fair conditions for both the people and the environment.
Throwing away food can generate different negative outputs. Rotten food produces methane: a gas that is 25 to 28 times more damaging than CO2, while incinerated food does not produce any type of soil-enriching substance like compost. Minimizing your wastage can be very easy by following some basic improvements like meal planning, leftover recipes, etc. If you want to know more about this subject check out our article: Easy Ways to Reduce Food Waste at Home and Save Money.
Pro tip: download the app WIN Sustainably to save some unsold food from your favorite spot in town! If you want to learn new recipes to repurpose your leftovers, follow us on social media (Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and LinkedIn), we always update new ones.
Consider food minimalism. Preferring to cook at home allows you to control ingredients and quantities, avoiding excessive consumption and focusing on the quality of them. By adopting this simple hack you are able to manage the portion sizes and the cooking methods, reducing the reliance on processed and packaged meals. Selecting whole and raw ingredients reduce overconsumption, helping to decrease demand for resource-intensive food production.
By adopting some of these practices you are going to reduce your impact on the planet. You will promote producers that embrace biodiversity and fair work practices: preventing habitat destruction, preserving a rich variety of plant and animal species essential to the ecosystem, promoting fair wages, humane treatment of animals, and ethical working conditions. These are just some of the advantages brought by a sustainable approach to your diet. We encourage you to educate yourself about the food industry and the impact of your food choices. Sharing your knowledge and commitment with others. Encouraging your entourage to question their decision and advocating for a more sustainable food system. Finally, sustainable eating is not a passing trend; it's a movement that aligns our dietary choices with the well-being of the planet. By adopting responsible food and supporting ethical and sustainable practices, we can all play a role in creating a more sustainable food system. Embrace the power of your plate and make mindful, environmentally-conscious choices that contribute to a healthier future for both ourselves and the Earth. Together, we can make a significant impact and lead the way for a more sustainable and balanced world.