Our Top Stories
Climate breakdown and food shortages: Extreme weather events have caused many food shortages across the UK already this year, but their impact on food supplies is expected to become ever more obvious unless serious mitigation measures are put in place. The Grocer examines the roadmap of the food industry in the face of climate change. Under the most optimistic scenarios - if the Paris Agreement is met - predictions still show 8% of crops and 5% of livestock would be at risk. All in all, it means food shortages as a result of extreme weather events are not only likely, but inevitable. [The Grocer]
Moving away from an incremental approach: Alan Jope, CEO of Unilever, has spoken out about the lack of corporate action to reduce global emissions. According to Edie, Jope - speaking at the Unilever’s’ London offices late last week - said: “The time for incrementality is long gone. The problems we’re facing are far too big for an incremental approach.” The company has led the way as a corporate voice for climate action, and continues to do so, by advising listeners to “not work in the system, but to work on the system”. [Edie]
Weak climate transition plans: While major food companies are setting ambitious targets to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, Yahoo Finance reports that a new Ceres analysis has found many of them are far from implementing the necessary changes to align with and accelerate the transition to a zero emissions economy. The insights of the report should act as a jumping-off point for businesses to build actionable strategies beyond the carbon accounting they have done so far. But it seems that for now, corporate ambition is still dwarfing action. [Yahoo Finance]
Brand Spotlight - Compass Group
Compass Group is planning to reformulate up to 90,000 recipes to reduce their carbon impact as part of a new partnership with the carbon calculator Foodsteps. The UK’s biggest caterer now has improved capability to measure the carbon footprint of the 180.9 million meals they deliver every year. To promote low carbon menus, chefs will be encouraged to experiment with different ingredients with the aim of creating a plethora of sustainable recipes that align with the 1.5C climate goal. [Foodservice Footprint]
Shapeshifting birds: Marketa Zimova and her team have found that birds across the Americas are getting smaller and longer-winged as the world warms. The smallest-bodied species also seem to be changing the fastest. It’s now suggested that body size may be an important determinant of how a species is responding to climate change. The next steps are to see whether smaller species are therefore better at adapting to the changing temperatures, which could have implications for conservation strategies across the world. [PNAS]
“Half of the greenhouse gas emissions from China’s food system occur during food production.”Source: Nature
The Big Picture
The food and agriculture industry is at the heart of the climate crisis, generating around a third of man-made greenhouse emissions. And while the challenge of reducing its impact may seem beyond our grasp, it is one that we all have the power to tackle.
We believe that the solution lies in climate transparency. That’s why we’re equipping businesses with the means to evaluate and communicate the emissions of their products. This, in turn, means consumers are armed with credible, independent information, which can be used to make more sustainable choices.
We know that many people want to take climate action but lack the necessary tools and information to do so. We're confident that, armed with the right knowledge, everyone can and will do their bit to build a greener, more sustainable food system.
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