Climate change food calculator: What’s your diet’s carbon footprint?

Climate change food calculator: What’s your diet’s carbon footprint?
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Avoiding meat and dairy products is one of the biggest ways to reduce your environmental impact, according to recent scientific studies.

Switching to a plant-based diet can help fight climate change, according to a major report by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which says the West’s high consumption of meat and dairy is fuelling global warming.

But what is the difference between beef and chicken? Does a bowl of rice produce more climate warming greenhouse gases than a plate of chips? Is wine more environmentally friendly than beer?

To find out the climate impact of what you eat and drink, choose from one of the 34 items in the BBC’s calculator and pick how often you have it.

Food production is responsible for a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to global warming, according to a University of Oxford study.

However, the researchers found that the environmental impact of different foods varies hugely.

This Carbon Calculator measures the carbon footprint of what you eat.

For example if you say you have two slices of bread a day, it tells you this bread is contributing 43kg to your annual green house gas emissions, which is equivalent to driving a car 111 miles, or heating an average UK home for 6 days. It also uses the equivalent water to 276 showers (each 8-minute) to produce.

A small daily piece of cheese (30g) is about 8 times this, and beef (eg a hamburger) is 66 times this, or eight return flights London to Malaga.

This Calculator was developed by the BBC and is on their website at