Finnish methodology for calculating carbon and other footprints for food products
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Finnish methodology for calculating carbon and other footprints for food products. Hanna Hartikainen, Juha-Matti Katajajuuri, Hannele Pulkkinen, Merja Saarinen, Frans Silvenius MTT Agrifood Research Finland, 00790 Helsinki, Finland, [email protected]

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Finnish methodology for calculating carbon and other footprints for food products
Finnish methodology for calculating carbon and other footprints for food products

Hanna Hartikainen, Juha-Matti Katajajuuri, Hannele Pulkkinen, Merja Saarinen, Frans Silvenius

MTT Agrifood Research Finland, 00790 Helsinki, Finland, [email protected]

  • Finnish Foodprint -research program (2009-2012, www.mtt.fi/english/foodprint) – targets

  • Harmonised, science-based, practical and LCA based methodology and guidelines/tools for calculating footprints for food products - particularly for Finnish food sector

  • Investigation of current LCA/footprinting methodologies/best practices, and following and contributing to international progress (e.g. ERT, ISO14067)

  • Active involvement of Finnish food chain players (retail, industry, farms) throughout the program

  • Focus on: climate impact, acidification, eutrophication, and primary energy; water FP also discussed

FOODPRINT -PROGRAM LEAD BY MTT:

WP 1. METHODOLOGY FOR FOOTPRINTS

WP 2. ACTIVITY DATA CHANNELS AND DATA COLLECTION: Organising reliable and upgradable data collection: piloting

WP 3. DEVELOPING CALCULATION MODELS & TOOLS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL BURDENS (LCI) AND IMPACTS: piloting

WP 4. WORKSHOPS & TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER TO SECTOR:

Communication of footprints/methodology between key stakeholders (industry, farms, NGO’s, administration, international bodies etc.)

COMPANY PROJECTS:

Fazer Bakeries R&D-project

SOK, Inex Partners

& HOK-Elanto

R&D-project

HK Ruokatalo & LSO R&D-project

Other companies: Stora Enso, Organic Beef Cattle Farm (Tanhuanpää), Tekes

Some key methodological questions

Allocation rules, data quality requirements, system boundaries, land use change impacts to climate

Some decisions made in the methodology

Attributional-approach; Cradle-to-gate LCI, but impacts of consumer activities should be communicated separately; Detailed instructions for data quality and system boundaries have been drawn: e.g. considerable amount of supply chain specific data required when communicating publicly

  • Key challenges with allocation:

  • Diverse allocation methods may lead to radically different results (see Figure)

  •  Reduces comparability of results

  • Existing guides (ISO 14044/44, GHG-Protocol, PAS2050, ILCD etc.) give somewhat different general rules to allocation situations

  • General rules are rather loose: give space to diverse interpretations and freedom to select on an ad hoc basis

  • Lack of good specific guidance

  • PCR development still in its early

  • stages

Figure: This example shows how critical allocation decisions are for footprints E.g. carbon footprint of butter changes dramatically when using fat content or protein content as the allocation factor (SMP/WMP/BMP = skim - /whole - /butter milk powder) (based on Feitz et al. 2007)

  • Our aims and instructions in allocation situations

  • Aim to define general principles for allocation situations for food products and to give some illustrative examples to avoid mixed interpretations

  • Aim to promote more harmonized allocation rules: specific instructions for allocation situations to some food products are to be investigated (closer to ‘PCR level’)

  • Substitution method is not allowed in principle

Setac, Milano, Italy 15.-19.5.2011


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