In today’s rapidly growing world 62 billion tones of resources (e.g. minerals, wood, metals, fossil and biomass fuels) are extracted annually from the environment to fulfill societies inexhaustible consumption demands!!
What is more important, flabbergasting actually is that 1/5 of these resources extracted for use end up being wasted away according to new research revealed by edie’s newsroom! In fact, OECD report Sustainable materials management state food having a larger environmental footprint than the packaging wrapped around it. Why? Well simply think about the life cycle assessment of a cardboard carton and milk! You will quickly come to realize that milk has many more components that need to be taken into consideration in relation to its carbon footprint, and that is without stopping at the “cow point”!This in turn suggests that wasting milk is worse for the environment than buying smaller cardboard cartons.
The response by businesses to this of course has been to apply different life cycle assessments on products, yet it appears that when a product is produced in such an environmentally friendly manner, emphases is placed more so on the package that it will be delivered in to consumers, than the actual product its self! Not to say that this applies to all products, as nowadays life cycle assessment is also applied to the actual resources of products to reveal and minimize the water and carbon which they are married with. Such transparency in today’s products has been a result of the evolution of consumers becoming environmentally conscious and ethical consumers in addition to businesses recognizing that climate change is a massive risk which they cannot afford to ignore!
For instance, CSE (Center for Sustainability & Excellence) CSE calculated the Water Footprint of Gaea’s Olive Oil products the first of its kind worldwide. Calculations were conducted for olive oil that is produced in the regions of Lasithi, Crete and Messinia, Peloponnese, with the support of CSE and Christos Zoumides, Water Footprint expert and Research Fellow at the Department of Environmental Management at the University of Technology in Cyprus. The reason behind this initiative was the realization that The Water Footprint of a product is the volume of freshwater used to produce the product, measured over the full supply chain. Hence, water is a critical resource and essential for business performance in the long term!!!
For further recommendations on how to grow economically without contributing to environmental degradation, visit CSE sustainability solutions!