Denmark mulls labelling food for climate impact

Copenhagen: Denmark is planning to compel food manufacturers and supermarkets to put labels on their products to outline the impact on the climate and environment.

The government, which is discussing the proposal, is being backed by the Danish Agriculture and Food Council, the industry umbrella organisation which is in favour of implementing the best practices in an effort to alleviate the effects of farming on climate change, CNN reported.

“Everyone knows that food production influences the climate, but if the rest of the world produced food the way we do in Denmark, the world would be a better place,” Morten Høyer, director of the council, said.

While Denmark has been working with the European Union for the past 10 years to develop a label on food products to rate climate change, Høyer believes that it would not be “easy” to implement the proposal.

“It may be necessary to compare the climate effect of a product with how nutritious it is. A soda might only have a small impact on the climate, but it will not sustain you. Our goal is to develop an accurate label. We must include every piece of information so products like plant-based substitutes for ground meat has information on the climate impact of the soy in the product which is produced in South America. Things like these are difficult to calculate, so we have a worthy challenge ahead of us before we can say with certainty that we have the right solution for a climate label,” Høyer elucidated.

This comes after the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report on Monday stating that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.

With clear benefits to people and natural ecosystems, limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared to 2°C could go hand-in-hand by ensuring a more sustainable and equitable society, the report added.