The carbon footprint of worldwide food losses and food waste amounts to the equivalent of 3.3 gigatons of CO2 emissions.
Compared to the CO² emissions of individual countries this volume ranks third among the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitters after China and the USA. What this means in concrete terms is that the greenhouse gas associated with the production, processing, transport and storage of all non-consumed food corresponds to roughly half of what both China and the USA emit into the atmosphere each year. For Germany this figure stands at approximately one gigaton, i.e. less than one third of all global emissions caused by food loss and waste. 3.3 gigatons – or 3.3 billion tons in other words – are an enormous amount. By comparison: the greenhouse gas emissions associated with road traffic in all of the USA totalled 1.5 gigatons in 2010.