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Poultry production fares particularly well among animal proteins, and eggs even more so, as far as CO2 emissions are concerned, but how do the citizens of individual countries rank in terms of the CO2 emissions attributable to their consumption of poultry meat or eggs?
A new ranking has revealed just this, looking at the CO2 emissions per head of population for a number of animal and plant foods.
While the amount of CO2 attributable to each person may come as somewhat of a surprise, the ranking itself is less surprising, and correlates with where per capita chicken meat consumption is highest.
At the top of the table for CO2 emissions, for example, Israel, with 67.4 kg of CO2 emissions per person attributable to poultry consumption, while next on the list is Trinidad and Tobago with 62.59 kg.
Looking at a few countries at random reveals the following:
In the Americas, the United States has the sixth highest score globally at 53.72 kg, Brazil is 11th with 48.34 kg, and Mexico sits at 33rd place with 32.35 kg.
Looking to Europe, Russia is ranked 37th with 29.54 kg and Poland 39th with 29.44 kg.
In Asia, Thailand comes in at 86th globally with 14.71 kg, China at 89th with 14.18 kg, and India is ranked 117th with 2.02 kg.
The study’s authors used data from the Food and Agriculture Organization to determine the quantity of chicken, and other produce, supplied for consumption. Using CO2 emissions data, the carbon footprint per capita was then calculated. One-hundred-and-thirty countries were examined in total.
The ranking has been made available online, broken down by food type, with an explanation of the methodology used, and the data for each food type can be manipulated from highest emissions per person to lowest, so you may want to take a look.
The Food Carbon Footprint Index has been published by German nutrient and supplement retailer nu3.
nu3 CEO Dr. Robert Sunderhauf has said that the study reveals how switching to a vegan diet could drastically reduce our carbon footprints but, that for those who find the idea of completely giving up meat a challenge, fish and poultry have a far lower CO2 emission rate than red meat, while eggs produce significantly lower emissions than milk products or cheese.