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Environmental impacts of food waste in a life cycle perspective: A case study in a Swedish supermarket
University of Borås, Faculty of Textiles, Engineering and Business.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0743-1335
2016 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Sustainable development
Sustainable Development/Sustainability is used as a subject keyword for the thesis
Abstract [en]

The food production system has been acknowledged as a problem that needs to be addressed in order to achieve a sustainable society. Hertwich and Peters (2009), estimate that 10-30% of an individual’s environmental impact is related to the industrial production and consumption of food. The problem is aggravated by the wastage of one third of the global food production. The consequences of the wastage of food are the loss of resources, such as energy, water, land and labour and unnecessary emissions of pollutants.

In order to address this problem several actions have been proposed. The Sustainable Development Goal 12.3, which Sweden has committed to fulfil, aims to reduce by half the amount of food waste along the production and supply chain by 2030.

Retail is an important player in the food supply chain. Its influence spreads both upstream to suppliers and downstream to consumers. Therefore, this research aims to contribute to reduction of the environmental impacts related to food waste in retail, by identifying products with high environmental impacts. The main goals of this study are 1) the quantification of food waste produced by the supermarket and 2) to examine the environmental impacts of selected products in order to assess the impacts generated by the waste production at the supermarket.

The findings of the research revealed 1) the importance of not only measuring the food waste in terms of mass, but also in terms of environmental indicators and costs. The results indicate bread as an important contributor for the environmental footprint of the supermarket and a potential product for interventions 2) Sorting the organic content of the products from its packaging before sending it to the current waste treatment leads to a reduction in the carbon footprint.

The research identified the following recommendations: 1) increasing supermarket personnel and consumers’ awareness regarding the environmental impact of food waste, 2) finding alternative routes for waste treatment and 3) improving logistic operations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016.
Keyword [en]
food waste; life cycle assessment; waste management; supermarket, sustainable development
National Category
Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-11708OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-11708DiVA: diva2:1063260
Subject / course
Resource Recovery
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-03-08 Created: 2017-01-09 Last updated: 2017-03-08Bibliographically approved

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Brancoli(1355 kB)69 downloads
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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
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  • asciidoc
  • rtf