Crunching the Numbers

Do you know how far your food travels before it reaches your supermarket?  Or how much water was used to produce it?  Chances are most people have no idea what the numbers are behind food production.  The average US meal comes from 5 countries.  Even if you buy all of your food from the same supermarket, most likely they come from different countries.  From farm to market, food travels between 1500 and 2500 miles, this is a 25% increase from twenty years ago.  This long distance travel for our food increases the fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.  An exorbitant amount of water is also used in the production of food, while the majority of agriculture is rain-fed, irrigated agriculture produces 40% of the worlds food and consumes 75% of the fresh water.  A few examples of the amounts of water used to produce agriculture:  1 Kg of beef uses 16,000-100,000 liters of water to produce, 140 liters to produce 1 cup of coffee, and 25 liters to produce 1 liter of beer.  These numbers are just a few facts on what goes into producing our food, and what it costs the environment.

For more information on the numbers behind food production: