The unseen costs of food miles

Transport Tuesday by Holly Royce

At 1MW, we talk a lot about how consuming less and purchasing products in a certain way will reduce your carbon footprint. Being conscious of these actions and making positive choices has a large impact on our carbon footprint because of the fossil fuels and greenhouse gasses emitted in the production, growth and transportation of the product.

Screen Shot 2013-06-11 at 12.37.40 PMThis Transport Tuesday we’ll be addressing  ‘Food Miles’ in our groceries, why you should be conscious of them, and how you can reduce them.

The term ‘food miles’ refers to the total geographic distance food is transported between their cultivation, processing and to the consumer at the point of sale. Food miles can not be converted into a traditional unit of measuring distance, but rather refers to a field of study in an aim to raise awareness and dialogue on the complete picture of carbon emissions in our food.

Today we are able to head down to the supermarket and purchase a vast array of foods from all over the world, no longer restricted by local environmental factors and/or the seasonality of a product.

These luxuries come at many unseen costs, thanks to the carbon emissions as a result of the production and use chemicals, the raising of livestock, the highly mechanised means of production, and the transportation, processing, packaging and retailing of food products.

How can I reduce?

Our friends over at Sustainable Table have created this infographic which provides an excellent checklist for shoppers looking to reduce their food miles.

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You can also check out Sustainable Table’s handy guide to seasonal produce, making it easier for you to plan meals and shopping lists when you hit those local growers markets on the weekends. To see more of their seasonal produce guide, click here.


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Every time we spend our money, we are making a choice about the

kind of future we want and the kind of future we’ll have.

To find out more head over to our website: We are daughters, mothers, sisters and grandmothers getting on with practical climate action to live better for us and the planet. Join the movement at www.1millionwomen.com.au

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