Follow Walkers’ carbon footstepsMarch 21, 2007 at 3:50 am | Posted in Britain, Climate activities, Climate change, Cultural Food, Environment, Ethics, European food | 6 Comments
Walkers Cheese & Onion Crisps are blazing a trail by being one of the first products to voluntarily bear a Carbon Trust Carbon Reduction Label on their packaging in a trial to test and build consumer understanding. (Of course, these have always been my husband’s favourite flavour and brand of crisps … so their story caught my eye instantly!)
To calculate the carbon footprint of a packet of Walkers Cheese & Onion Crisps on behalf of Walkers, the Carbon Trust has:
- for the ground to recycling process—mapped the key stages in Walkers’ supply chain (as in illustrations 1 through 5 below)
- for each stage—converted energy consumption into a carbon emissions figure
- for the total—added the carbon emissions from all the stages to give a total value for the carbon footprint of each packet of these crisps of 75g
Visit Walkers Carbon Footprint Calculation that explains this process in detail.
Before the libertarians claim this is another attempt to force government control and add unnecessary costs to product manufacturing cycles, I should emphasise that:
- The Carbon Trust label is a voluntary model for green-keen businesses and consumers.
- Carbon Trust labelling will only be used by companies that target ethical shoppers who are, by their very nature, often prepared to pay extra for such information and action.
- The scheme applies to products, not corporations. As such, it is appropriate in cases where reduced emissions translate into higher profits through increased sales and/or reduced costs.
- Other green branding methods will exist in parallel.