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The BBC has shared a calculator which works out how what you eat affects the planet.

The calculator has 34 different food options including different fruit and vegetables, animal products including dairy milk, non-dairy milk, and drinks like tea and wine. It also has options for how regularly you consume that food.

Once these values are selected, the calculator shows how much the consumption contributes to your annual kg of greenhouse gas emissions, and how this compares to driving a car or heating a home*. It also shows how much water it uses.

Food impact on the planet

The BBC cites significant research by Oxford University’s Dr. Joseph Poore published last year which shows that ditching meat and dairy is the most significant step people can take to reduce their impact on the planet.

“Food production is responsible for a quarter of all human-produced greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to global warming, according to the study on which the calculator is based,” the news outlet says.

“The research found meat and other animal products were responsible for most food-related greenhouse gas emissions, despite providing only a fifth of the calories consumed.”

You can find the food calculator here

*According to the BBC, all figures for each food in the calculator are global averages

Maria Chiorando

Maria is the editor of Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle.