EU improves food & drink environmental footprint assessment
On January 20 2014 the European Food SCP Round Table launched the ENVIFOOD Protocol version 1.0., a major step forward in helping consumers make informed product choices. The ENVIFOOD Protocol is the first methodology based on both global (ISO) and EU (Product Environmental Footprint - PEF) approaches to provide specific guidance for conducting environmental footprint assessments in the food, feed and drink sector. A key principal of the ENVIFOOD Protocol is to promote informed product choice through the communication of scientifically reliable, consistent, and understandable environmental product information.
The ENVIFOOD Protocol is the result of a four-year collaboration between the European Commission and more than 20 European organisations from the food sector. Its publication followed a series of 19 pilots and a public consultation in 2013. The European Food SCP Round Table now seeks to promote the uptake of the Protocol by providing technical support during the EU food, feed and drink pilot tests.
According to EU Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik, European Consumers are often confused by the vast variety of food labels and consequently lose confidence in their credibility. Increasing transparency for consumers would incentivise producers to make their products greener. In this way, the ENVIFOOD Protocol and the ongoing work within the FOOD SCP Round Table has the potential to contribute to more sustainable production and consumption patterns.