An Inconvenient Tooth: Food Is Major Contributor to Climate Change

New 'Low Carbon Diet' Aims to Take Bite Out of Global Warming



Apr 17, 2007, 01:00 ET from Bon Appetit Management Company

    PALO ALTO, Calif., April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Global warming activists
 have a new ally in their fight to save the planet -- lunch.
     It turns out that food (and all the energy it takes to make it) is one
 of the largest human activities contributing to global warming. The average
 American creates 2.8 tons of CO2 emissions each year by eating -- even more
 than the 2.2 tons each person generates by driving, according to recent
 research (Echel and Martin, 2006).
     Beginning on Earth Day, 2007, Bon Appetit Management Company -- the
 nation's pioneer in "greening" food service, is launching a national
 campaign to reduce their own greenhouse gas emissions and help their guests
 do the same.
     With 400 cafes in corporations, universities and specialty venues
 nationwide -- including Yahoo!, Oberlin College and the Seattle Art Museum
 -- Bon Appetit will encourage chefs and diners to think about how their
 food choices could help ease the climate crisis.
     "It is insane to sit down to lunch in Los Angeles and drink water that
 has traveled 5,000 miles from Fiji," said Helene York, director of the Bon
 Appetit Management Company Foundation, the program's organizer. "We are
 scrutinizing our own food habits to reduce our carbon footprint as a
 company, and we are helping our guests do the same on an individual level."
     The Low Carbon Diet will include:
 
     * Reducing the use of beef by 25% -- Livestock production is responsible
       for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions.
     * Sourcing all meat and poultry from North America -- 80% of the energy
       used by the food system comes not from growing food, but from
       transporting and processing it.
     * Sourcing nearly all fruits and vegetables from North America, using
       seasonal local produce as a first preference and using tropical fruits
       only as "special occasion" ingredients -- Most bananas have traveled
       3,000 miles in high-speed refrigerated ships to reach an American
       breakfast plate. A local apple might be grown within 10 miles.
     * Serving only domestic bottled water and reducing waste from plastic
       bottles -- Americans throw away 40 million plastic water bottles every
       day.
     * Reducing food waste -- Goal of 25% reduction in three years or less.
     * Auditing the energy efficiency of kitchen equipment -- In home or
       commercial kitchens energy losses of up to 30% can be easily corrected
       for very low cost.
     In addition, beginning on Low Carbon Diet Day in April, 2008, Bon
 Appetit Management Company will introduce a carbon point system so that
 guests can calculate the impact of their personal food choices and thereby
 make knowledgeable decisions about and/or adjustments to their own diet.
     Bon Appetit, which serves more than 80 million meals per year, has
 taken a radical approach to the business of food service by bringing
 sustainably-grown foods to the American public through their Farm to Fork
 standard (buying from local farmers and artisan producers), initiatives in
 sustainable seafood, milk without artificial hormones, antibiotic reduction
 in poultry and meat, trans- fat free cooking, cage-free eggs, and their
 stand against animal cloning.
     "The Low Carbon Diet is about eating in a way that is conscious of
 environmental impact. It also happens to be about a $400 million company
 making radical decisions that are smart business," added York. "Our Low
 Carbon Diet gets to the heart of an issue that has been conspicuously
 absent from the global warming conversation."
     About Bon Appetit Management Company
     Bon Appetit Management Co. is an onsite restaurant company offering
 full food service management to corporations, universities and specialty
 venues. Bon Appetit is committed to sourcing sustainable, local foods for
 all its cafes throughout the country. A pioneer in environmentally sound
 sourcing policies, Bon Appetit has developed programs with Environmental
 Defense, the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch, the Humane Society of
 the United States, and other leading conservation organizations. Based in
 Palo Alto, CA, Bon Appetit has more than 400 cafes in 28 states, including
 Oracle Corporation, American University and the Getty Center.
 (www.bamco.com)
 
 

SOURCE Bon Appetit Management Company
    PALO ALTO, Calif., April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Global warming activists
 have a new ally in their fight to save the planet -- lunch.
     It turns out that food (and all the energy it takes to make it) is one
 of the largest human activities contributing to global warming. The average
 American creates 2.8 tons of CO2 emissions each year by eating -- even more
 than the 2.2 tons each person generates by driving, according to recent
 research (Echel and Martin, 2006).
     Beginning on Earth Day, 2007, Bon Appetit Management Company -- the
 nation's pioneer in "greening" food service, is launching a national
 campaign to reduce their own greenhouse gas emissions and help their guests
 do the same.
     With 400 cafes in corporations, universities and specialty venues
 nationwide -- including Yahoo!, Oberlin College and the Seattle Art Museum
 -- Bon Appetit will encourage chefs and diners to think about how their
 food choices could help ease the climate crisis.
     "It is insane to sit down to lunch in Los Angeles and drink water that
 has traveled 5,000 miles from Fiji," said Helene York, director of the Bon
 Appetit Management Company Foundation, the program's organizer. "We are
 scrutinizing our own food habits to reduce our carbon footprint as a
 company, and we are helping our guests do the same on an individual level."
     The Low Carbon Diet will include:
 
     * Reducing the use of beef by 25% -- Livestock production is responsible
       for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions.
     * Sourcing all meat and poultry from North America -- 80% of the energy
       used by the food system comes not from growing food, but from
       transporting and processing it.
     * Sourcing nearly all fruits and vegetables from North America, using
       seasonal local produce as a first preference and using tropical fruits
       only as "special occasion" ingredients -- Most bananas have traveled
       3,000 miles in high-speed refrigerated ships to reach an American
       breakfast plate. A local apple might be grown within 10 miles.
     * Serving only domestic bottled water and reducing waste from plastic
       bottles -- Americans throw away 40 million plastic water bottles every
       day.
     * Reducing food waste -- Goal of 25% reduction in three years or less.
     * Auditing the energy efficiency of kitchen equipment -- In home or
       commercial kitchens energy losses of up to 30% can be easily corrected
       for very low cost.
     In addition, beginning on Low Carbon Diet Day in April, 2008, Bon
 Appetit Management Company will introduce a carbon point system so that
 guests can calculate the impact of their personal food choices and thereby
 make knowledgeable decisions about and/or adjustments to their own diet.
     Bon Appetit, which serves more than 80 million meals per year, has
 taken a radical approach to the business of food service by bringing
 sustainably-grown foods to the American public through their Farm to Fork
 standard (buying from local farmers and artisan producers), initiatives in
 sustainable seafood, milk without artificial hormones, antibiotic reduction
 in poultry and meat, trans- fat free cooking, cage-free eggs, and their
 stand against animal cloning.
     "The Low Carbon Diet is about eating in a way that is conscious of
 environmental impact. It also happens to be about a $400 million company
 making radical decisions that are smart business," added York. "Our Low
 Carbon Diet gets to the heart of an issue that has been conspicuously
 absent from the global warming conversation."
     About Bon Appetit Management Company
     Bon Appetit Management Co. is an onsite restaurant company offering
 full food service management to corporations, universities and specialty
 venues. Bon Appetit is committed to sourcing sustainable, local foods for
 all its cafes throughout the country. A pioneer in environmentally sound
 sourcing policies, Bon Appetit has developed programs with Environmental
 Defense, the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch, the Humane Society of
 the United States, and other leading conservation organizations. Based in
 Palo Alto, CA, Bon Appetit has more than 400 cafes in 28 states, including
 Oracle Corporation, American University and the Getty Center.
 (www.bamco.com)
 
 SOURCE Bon Appetit Management Company