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Leeds commits to lower climate impact of food under council control

The city will buy and serve more food produced in Yorkshire and neighbouring counties, stop the purchase of airfreighted foods and halve the average carbon footprint of meals by 2030.

Credit: Leeds City Council

Credit: Leeds City Council

Leeds City Council’s Food Champion Councillor Abigail Marshall Katung announced the trio of measures during a low carbon lunch at the iconic Kirkgate market bringing together partners across the food system in Leeds including the City Council, FoodWise Leeds, University of Leeds, Fairshare Yorkshire, Rethink Food and Ministry of Food. Most of the food under Council control is served by Catering Leeds, which provides school dinners to 182 primary schools across the city.

The new commitments build on the Glasgow Food and Climate Declaration – a commitment signed by Leeds and many other cities and local areas around the globe to tackle the climate emergency through integrated food policies and a call on national governments to act.

The reductions in emissions will be calculated from the 2019 baseline by a team of academics from the Consumer Data Research Centre and University of Leeds. The data will provide catering staff with an easy way to compare carbon footprints of meals and enable them to adjust menus to achieve the desired reduction in carbon emissions.

Published 4 Oct 2021

Food for the Planet: Food for the Planet is helping local authorities, businesses and organisations take simple actions to tackle the climate and nature emergency through food.

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