Think local, seasonal and organic to keep family and planet safe

California was in the news this week as it took its fight against global warming to the farm! Greenhouse gases produced by dairy cows and other livestock will soon be under the scanner as the ‘Methane Law’ was passed in the State.

The new law aims to reduce methane emissions from dairies and livestock operations to 40% below 2013 levels by 2030. This is going to be implemented by developing regulations, which will soon be enforced. So how does the food and dairy industry impact global warming and climate change exactly?

Globally, food accounts for 48% of the environmental impacts on land and 70% on water resources. This covers dairy, meat and other processed food all of which are increasing rapidly as countries develop and the incomes rise. A sustainable food cycle involves distribution, transportation, preservation and of course organic farming.

Large scale industrial agriculture impacts land and environment through declining water tables, chemical leaching, chemical runoff, soil erosion, land degradation, loss in biodiversity, and other ecological concerns. A more sustainable means of acquiring food is to purchase locally and seasonally grown fruits and vegetables. Doing so minimizes the carbon footprint by optimizing transport and stimulating the local economy.

Local, small-scale farming operations typically utilise more sustainable methods of agriculture than conventional industrial farming systems. Decreased tillage, nutrient cycling, fostered biodiversity and reduced chemical pesticide and fertilizer applications all contribute positively to the environment.

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