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Sustainability in food: an unprecedented way to save the planet Earth

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Last November was moved in social networks. They circulated them virally several infographics and food-related trade which showed the serious problems that lead agricultural monocultures and livestock macroexplotaciones.

On the one hand we see the ban on the issuance of a notice of the chain supermarkets Iceland, that the eyes of the regulatory body for UK advertising was "too political".

Does your content? A beautiful animation in which a girl meets an orphan orangutan breeding. And a statement specializing in frozen food chain through which undertook not to work with items that would contain palm oil.

Palm oil It is already in all kinds of products, from cosmetics to candles, but especially in processed foods.

And the palms? the species Elaeis guineensis, main productora oily fruits, It was native to the tropical coast of West Africa, but now it covers vast tracts replacing the low forest in Southeast Asia destructive process that threatens to 193 endangered species according to the Red List of Threatened Species of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, with taxa as made visible as the Sumatran tiger, Borneo elephant or our relative and advertising character, The Orangutan.

There are no evil. Landscape degradation, violated fundamental human rights and brutal attacks against indigenous to cause the abandonment of the lands that have always inhabited. Spoliation of not enough talk. As usually happens.

Since Rainforest Rescue, an NGO fighting the pandemic of oil palm, It is encouraged consumers to cook at home with fresh ingredients. And the quickest way to show discontent and not participate in this slaughter is to stop relying on processed foods. There is nothing that companies understand better than a punch in the wallet.

Some franchises restoration organized and committed to greater sustainability in food. KFC, Taco Bell y Pizza Hut (all owned by Yum! Brands) only acquire labeling palm oil RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil).

Sounds good, however the reality is that rampant corruption in countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (countries where, said passage is, It has destroyed an area of ​​virgin rainforest equivalent to almost 7 000 000 football fields to use as a palm crops), prevents ensure the sustainability of crops.

Less clear yet what has McDonald's, Whats Next, lagging, the path marked by the above fast food chains. Expect in 2020 They have stopped using sustainable palm oil.

Restaurants who want to exercise their social responsibility and the environment can turn to toolkit sustainable palm oil for Wildlife Act, Available for free in English.

Or you can stop using it altogether. The deescalada consumption is a general need.

Returning to social networks, other publications reapers interactions at close range was an explanatory chart on individual actions that can be taken to reduce our carbon footprint.

The histogram began with an uncomfortable reality that is spoken increasingly in scientific circles, but that is publicly taboo: have one less child. The picture, extracted from a correspondence Seth Wynes Y Kimberley Nicholas for Environmental Research Letters, continuing in descending order of impact: "Live without a car", "Avoid an intercontinental flight ', "Buying green energy ', "Come to use electric car no car ', "It follows a vegan diet"…

Some of these actions involve significant logistical challenges, perhaps unaffordable for many; while others involve sacrifices immeasurable, both taboos that make (deescalada of the population and strict controls on birth).

Nevertheless, stresses that, between personal choices with high potential impact, include the veganismo. And not, there is no new ploy to become vegans their religion. If there is a good reason to go vegan, is, to the dismay of animal rights hypocrisy, the fight against climate change. Each person who adopts an exclusively vegetable diet contributes to emissions of greenhouse gases are reduced in 0.8 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

It's more, not even need to commit fully, How about eating less meat once a week? Small steps also include.

This same thinking aligns the Rights Alliance, Ambition, Earth and Climate (CLARA), that reason the report issued by the United Nations in early October on the future of our planet, published its own report discarding many of the mitigation measures based on geoengineering technologies years away from being feasible and advocated a approach to our fingertips: eat less meat.

Livestock and animal farms contribute about 14.5% of greenhouse gases. Mainly as methane.

Taking the initiative and reducing meat intake to two servings of 150 grams per week, it would be possible to mitigate the effects of climate change, extinction of the Anthropocene, the waste of natural resources (soil and water), of food insecurity (hormones, adulterated, transgenic) and loss of nutritional content of crops.

The group's vision is, Unfortunately, utopian. In the words of Zeke Haufather, US analyst. THE. for Carbon Brief, mitigate the problem-based behavioral changes is not feasible plans: "Convince the vast majority of the world's population to change their behavior without strong government penalties sounds pretty complicated '.

a change in the production model is claimed in the primary sector, but also a change in the way people consume. Obesity being a major crisis in the West, Another point to consider is the overeating.

In general it is necessary that humans eat less and better. That is the model for many betting vegan restaurants in Spain: he Pizzi & Dixie Nacho Sanchez in Madrid, he Veggie Garden de Barcelona, Green dwarf Sevilla O Camelia Y Vegetarian Quinoa Bar.

It is also important to consider what the effects of fads are that we join.

If we think millennials Y hipsters, What ingredient we come to mind? avocado.

The avocado tree was a tree doomed to extinction because its dispersion required the presence of megafauna disappeared Amazon already does (giant sloths). The tree has survived thanks to human, but now it has become a plague on a small scale, Like a less virulent oil palm were.

In Central slopes they are cut and traditional crops are reconverted to make way for new avocado monocultures. The demand created by the youth of the first world has caused prices should experience an explosive increase, and for the impoverished peasant and wholesale speculator this means an opportunity enrichment cortoplacista can not ignore.

When the trend begins to perish are will aquifers whose future is in doubt, infertile soils because of the indiscriminate use of pesticides, fragmented habitats and poorly functional, and bleak prospects for local people.

The case is especially blatant avocados as well as questionable farming, have a carbon footprint outstanding among products frutería. Energy expenditure involved in transporting shipments from producing countries (Mexico, Colombia, Puerto Rico) to consumers (OF. US and European Union) is, simply, brutal.

Can you stop this irremediable destruction? Yes. Giving priority to local products, the ecological and orchards foods derived from sustainably.

Restoration business can become standards of sustainability in food and expand their profit margins by engaging trade relations with local organic farmers, which, year after year, increase in number.

It can also act on menus, strengthening those based entirely on vegetable ingredients dishes.

Adding to this the possible promotional activities, the dates indicated and interest aroused among the population combating climate change and nature conservation, It can ensure that there is business model more responsibly restore the planet.

You just have to do a little more than average demands.

Sustainability in food: an unprecedented way to save the planet Earth
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About the Author

Alejandro A. Lazarus

Industrial Engineer, writer and translator. When your hands do not dance on the keyboard, wielding a butterfly net in some hidden valley. Owner Geometra Conservancy, Green initiative for nature conservation and biodiversity protection. Written contributions deal with technological innovations, digital marketing, gastronomy, sustainability and biodiversity.

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