EDMONTON, Alberta — A new study examining the concept of food miles concluded that the environmental benefits found in growing organic produce was reversed by longer-distance transportation requirements. The research, conducted by the University of Alberta, found that the annual environmental cost for a city the size of Edmonton for transporting organic produce ranged from $156,000 to $175,000 (Canadian), discharging up to 7,000 tons of carbon dioxide, whereas conventional produce came in at $135,000 to $183,000, and discharged up to 7,500 tons of carbon dioxide. The nearly identical margins indicate there is virtually no benefit to sourcing organic produce as a way of reducing food miles, or the environmental cost of transporting food to points of purchase. Most of the items in the study were transported into the region by fossil-fuel-burning trucks. The study’s authors had analyzed data on organic produce items collected from six Canadian supermarkets, and conducted interviews with the suppliers of those products.
Read More of Today's Headlines