A study of public procurements of food : The environmental impacts and how to reduce them

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Institutionen för teknikvetenskaper; Uppsala universitet/Institutionen för teknikvetenskaper; Uppsala universitet/Institutionen för teknikvetenskaper

Abstract: There is a challenge to feed an increasing world population. Simultaneously, as more people rely on food production, ensuring a sustainable food production becomes more important. In two of the United Nations’ seventeen sustainable development goals food is mentioned, and one of the more specific targets regards making public procurements more sustainable. There are however challenges with regards to how to reduce a Swedish public procurement’s environmental impacts. This is due to some fundamental principles every Swedish public procurement must follow. This thesis examines the environmental impacts of two public procurements of food, regarding global warming, acidification and eutrophication. It also examines whether calculating food’s environmental impacts per serving or per kg is the more representative approach. Lastly, this thesis examines how the environmental impacts of a public procurements of food can be reduced. Consequently, a methodology of how to minimize the environmental impacts of a procurement is presented. Firstly, the results show that the environmental impacts per servings and per kg differ. One procurement has approximately 50-60% higher environmental impacts compared to the other when measured per serving, but approximately 2-9% lower impacts when measured per kg. The authors argue that representing the environmental impacts per serving is more accurate, since it is more correlated to nutritional values. Secondly, the results show that the environmental impacts for minimizing each environmental impact category differs.

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