The food emissions ‘solutions’ alarming experts after Cop27

The food industry’s fingerprints were all over the solutions touted at the UN climate summit last month, campaigners and NGOs say

Nina Lakhani, The GuardianDec. 7, 2023

In some ways, this year’s UN climate summit held in Egypt was all about food. In the context of crop failures and food insecurity, due to extreme weather and dwindling diversity, as well as rising food prices exacerbated by Russia’s war in Ukraine and the tight grip of corporate monopolies – Cop27 included the first ever day dedicated to food and climate.

Scientists are clear that the interconnected climate, environmental and food crises require bold transformative action to drastically reduce greenhouse gases and improve resilience. Food systems produce a third of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. Cattle ranching is the main driver of Amazon rainforest loss, while industrialized food production is the biggest threat to 86% of the world’s species at risk of extinction.

But at Cop27, as in the debate more broadly, corporate interests dominated. Campaigners and NGOs say the food industry’s fingerprints were all over the solutions being touted, including an array of technologies and incentives that they say will do little to cut big food’s huge climate footprint, reduce diet-related diseases or increase food security and climate resilience in the long term.

“From treating cow burps to robotic weeders, none of the false solutions on offer at Cop27 come close to stopping the industrial food production from being an engine of planetary destruction,” said Raj Patel, food justice scholar and author of Stuffed and Starved. “Agribusiness and governments offered a series of patented patches designed not to transform the food system, but to keep it the same.” …

[… Read more at The Guardian]


Violife’s Vegan Cheese Makes Its ‘Top Chef’ Debut in Canada

Nicole Axworthy, VegNewsSept. 15, 2022


Season 10 of Top Chef Canada will challenge competing chefs to push the boundaries on creativity with a vegan feast.

On September 26, the Food Network’s cooking competition show Top Chef Canada is returning for Season 10—and this time it will be challenging the chefs to push the boundaries of their creativity in a vegan cooking competition. …

Vegan cooking finally gets on mainstream shows

In recent years, veganism has begun permeating mainstream television, with a number of popular cooking competition shows helping to carve out space for this animal-friendly way of cooking and eating. …

[… Read more at VegNews]


Dutch City Becomes First In The World To Ban Meat Adverts In Public

Haarlem has banned all public advertising for meat due to their impact on the planet

Polly Foreman, PlantBased NewsSeptember, 2022

A city in Holland has made history after agreeing to ban advertisements for meat products in public spaces.

Haarlem, which is located roughly 20 miles west of Amsterdam and has a population of 150,000, made the decision due to the link between meat production and the climate crisis.

Meat adverts will be banned on buses, shelters, and screens in public spaces. They will join the list of already-banned adverts for flying, petrol powered cars, and the fossil fuel industry. These are also banned in Amsterdam, Leiden, and The Hague, but Harleem is the first city to add meat to this list.

“Meat is just as harmful to the environment,” a GroenLinks Party councilor Ziggy Klazes told Doutch publication Trouw. “We can’t tell people there’s a climate crisis and encourage them to buy products that are part of the cause.” …

Holland cracks down on animal agriculture

This isn’t the first official stance against animal agriculture in the country.

In July of this year, farmers across Holland staged a number of protests after the government announced plans to reduce livestock herds to combat nitrogen emissions.

Farmers rode their tractors through cities and blocked roads in response, with one being shot at by police after a “threatening” situation arose. The protests ended with three arrests made for attempted murder.

Animal agriculture’s impact on the environment

Animal agriculture is catastrophic for the environment. It’s responsible for at least 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, which is more than the entire transport sector combined.

It is also a leading cause of rainforest destruction, and has contributed to around 91 percent of Amazon deforestation.

[… Read more at ]


U of T chefs serve up new menu of plant-based dishes

By Morgan Sharp, National Observer, August 25th, 2022

Students living on two University of Toronto campuses will have more vegetarian and vegan options to choose from when school starts up again next month.

Tofu, tempeh and seitan took the place of animal protein in a two-day, in-person training program offered to chefs, sous chefs and cooks by the Humane Society International Canada this week. And in return, the university’s St. George and Mississauga campuses have promised to make 20 per cent more of their overall menu plant-based.

If the move leads the industrial kitchens scattered across residences and affiliated accommodation to use less meat and other animal products, it could help the university towards its goal of becoming carbon positive by 2050, meaning it will absorb more carbon than it emits….

The menu they ran through and shared notes on this week, for example, included a sweet and smoky tempeh kale salad, chickpea omelette with hollandaise sauce, bechamel with spelt pasta and fresh herbs, Kung Pao chickpeas with sesame fried millet and mushroom lentil stroganoff with roasted potatoes and cabbage.

[… Read more at ]


Why Gen Z Is Going Plant-Based Faster Than Older Generations

Karen Asp, Sentient Media, June 28, 2022

When 22-year-old Cienna Romahn turned 16, she went vegan. She’d already been vegetarian for 10 years, but what started as a moral obligation to the animals became an obligation to the planet. “While animal welfare is still important to me, the environmental impact of my food and lifestyle choices is the number one focus for how I choose to live,” says Romahn who lives in San Francisco and works as an events manager at Hooray Foods.

Although her name may not be as well known as fellow zoomer and climate and environmental activist Greta Thunberg, Romahn is one of the many young individuals hoping to fight climate change one bite at a time. In fact, she and her peers are proving that the adage “with age comes wisdom” holds little merit. In the wake of dire warnings from the EAT-Lancet Commission and the Chatham House that the world needs to shift to a plant-based diet to avoid climate destruction, young people are latching onto the message and changing their diets faster than other generations.

For proof, look no further than a 2020 YouGov survey which found that Millennials are more likely than other generations to say they’ve changed their diet, one reason being to reduce their impact on the planet. According to the survey, they’re also more likely than Gen Xers and Baby Boomers to have tried a vegetarian diet, and more Millennials have gone vegan than older generations. What’s more, a report from the NPD Group shows that the Gen Z and Millennial generations will be almost entirely responsible for the growth of dairy and meat alternatives through 2024…

[… Read more at Sentient Media ]


Level Up Your Baking With These Vegan Egg Substitutes

by Grace Hussain, Sentient MediaJune 29, 2022

With so many different vegan egg substitutes available, choosing which one to use and how to use it in each baking project can be daunting. Regardless of the recipe, egg substitutes are available that doesn’t cause suffering to chickens or other birds. In fact, it’s likely that you already have a few of these substitutes in your fridge or pantry.

Is There a Vegan Egg Substitute?

There is not just one vegan egg substitute but a whole range of different options. Many are kitchen staples, others are specialty items available at health food stores, and some are replacements specifically crafted to replace eggs—particularly in recipes that use them as a central ingredient, like quiche. In baking, applesauce and pumpkin puree are useful substitutes, while the eggs in egg casseroles can be swapped for JUST egg, Red Mill Egg Replacer, or another specially formulated egg alternative.

How to Substitute Eggs in Vegan Baking

Baking without the eggs from chickens or other birds may seem challenging, but the reality is that swapping out eggs for other food items gives just as delicious results without contributing to the suffering of laying hens on factory farms. Below is a list of some of the options bakers have for making the switch from eggs to vegan substitutes in everything from cakes and muffins to shakshouka.

[… Read the 15 Substitutions, from flax and chia to aquafaba, at Sentient Media]


We’ve overexploited the planet, now we need to change if we’re to survive

Addressing the twin challenges of carbon emissions and biodiversity loss requires political will and leadership. Ambitious commitments must be made

Patrick Vallance, The GuardianJuly 8, 2022

The relationship between humans and nature is under intense and increasing strain. The report released today by Ipbes, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (akin to the IPCC reports on climate change), provides compelling evidence that humans are overexploiting wild species and habitats. Harmful activities, including habitat destruction, poor farming practices and pollution, have altered ecosystems significantly, driving many species past the point of recovery. In Great Britain alone, of the 8,431 species assessed in the 2019 State of Nature report,1,188 are threatened with extinction. Globally, there are an estimated one million at risk, with biodiversity declining at a faster rate than at any time in human history….

[… Read more at The Guardian ]


Gen Zs and Millennials Will Drive Growth of Plant-based Foods in the U.S. Over Next Few Years

Making Healthier Choices, Sustainability, and Animal Welfare Are Top Motivators for These Plant-based Consumers

Kim McLynn, NPDOct. 21, 2021

The consumer demand for plant-based beverages and foods for in-home meal prep has continued throughout the pandemic. Both dairy and meat plant-based alternatives are forecast to grow through 2024, driven almost entirely by Millennials and Gen Zs, who choose these products for better health and because of their interest in sustainability and animal welfare, reports The NPD Group.

The deep-rooted values of Gen Zs and Millennials behind their choice of plant-based foods enabled the category to continue to grow throughout the pandemic when many consumers turned to comfort or more familiar foods. The demand for plant-based foods didn’t waver during the pandemic. About one in five adults say they want more plant-based foods in their diets, and that number remained steady throughout 2020, according to NPD’s recently released The Future of Plant-based Snapshot: The Evolution of Plant-based Continues.

Interest in plant-based dairy and meat alternatives by Gen Zs and Millennials extends beyond burgers and almond milk. These plant-based consumers look for various meat, poultry, or seafood analogues, flavor profiles, formats. For this reason, plant-based opportunities exist across frozen, shelf-stable, indulgent, and snack categories.

“As consumers continue to prepare more meals in the home and younger generations cook more, plant-based foods and ingredients will be a part of their repertoire,” says Darren Seifer, NPD food industry analyst and co-author of the study. “In addition to providing a variety of plant-based foods and ingredients, food manufacturers should also focus efforts on Millennials and Gen Zs since they will be driving the category’s growth. Their concerns for sustainability and animal welfare should also be taken into account when messaging to them.”

[… Read at NPD ]

Plant-based meat by far the best climate investment, report finds

Exclusive: Non-animal proteins can play critical role tackling climate crisis, says Boston Consulting Group

Damian Carrington, The GuardianJuly 7, 2022

Investments in plant-based alternatives to meat lead to far greater cuts in climate-heating emissions than other green investments, according to one of the world’s biggest consultancy firms.

The report from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) found that, for each dollar, investment in improving and scaling up the production of meat and dairy alternatives resulted in three times more greenhouse gas reductions compared with investment in green cement technology, seven times more than green buildings and 11 times more than zero-emission cars.

Investments in the plant-based alternatives to meat delivered this high impact on emissions because of the big difference between the greenhouse gases emitted when producing conventional meat and dairy products, and when growing plants. Beef, for example, results in six-to-30 times more emissions than tofu


Meat and dairy production uses 83% of farmland and causes 60% of agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions, but provides only 18% of calories and 37% of protein. Moving human diets from meat to plants means less forest is destroyed for pasture and fodder growing and less emissions of the potent greenhouse gas methane produced by cattle and sheep…

Scientists have concluded that avoiding meat and dairy products is the single biggest way to reduce your environmental impact on the planet and that large cuts in meat consumption in rich nations are essential to ending the climate crisis. The Project Drawdown group, which assesses climate solutions, places plant-based diets in the top three of almost 100 options….

[… Read more at  The Guardian ]