This Earth Day, Bon Appetit proposed a challenge to every one of us to reduce our carbon "foodprints" by 25 percent, because just our foodprints -- all the energy it takes to grow, process, transport and prepare food -- are responsible for ONE-THIRD of all global greenhouse gas emissions. Bon Appetit is serious about its challenge and it has started its campaign by giving us some help: a Low Carbon Diet calculator!
Bon Appetit, a food service corporation, challenged other members of the food and restaurant industry, as well, to reducing their carbon foodprints by 25 percent. At its own cafes, Bon Appetit will introduce Low Carbon meals next week that are designed to have the greatest impact on climate change. Low Carbon menus will feature a preference for local and seasonable foods, with reduction in meat and cheeses, tropical fruits, and a reduction of food and packaging waste. By 2009, Bon Appetit will eliminate all air-freighted seafood.
These are the important tips to reduce carbon foodprints from Bon Appetit:
Top 5 Low Carbon Diet Tips
1. You Bought It, You Eat It - Don't Waste Food
When you waste food, you waste the energy used to grow, transport and cook it. In landfills, food waste releases methane gas, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Buy and prepare only the food you expect to eat. If you don't finish it all in one sitting, save the leftovers.
2. Make "Seasonal and Regional" Your Food Mantra
Foods that are in season in your region are generally lower in carbon. Those should be your first choice. Be careful not to buy produce grown in greenhouses or hot-houses heated with non-renewable energy even if they're close to you.
3. Moooove Away From Beef and Cheese
Livestock creates 18% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. If you eat meat and cheese, consider reducing portion sizes, selecting these items less frequently, and eating only those products you REALLY love.
4. Stop Flying Fish and Fruit - Don't Buy Air-Freighted Food
For seafood and out of season produce, "fresh" often means "air-flown" which is 10 times more emission-intensive than transporting products by ship. The best quality seafood is usually ‘processed and frozen at sea' and local produce tastes better.
5. If It's Processed and Packaged, Skip It
Snack foods, most juices, even veggie burgers (prepared, boxed, frozen and transported) consume a lot of energy. We eat this stuff mindlessly. When you need a treat or an "easy grab," choose fresh local fruit, small quantities of nuts, and delicious homemade alternatives.
Interesting stuff! And you can learn a lot more by visiting the Bon Appetit website and using the Low Carbon Diet calculator.
via Earth Times ; Bon Appetit