Irish consumers believe climate change fight is up to them
A new survey carried out by the European Milk Forum has found that Irish people consider personal responsiblity paramount in the face of climate change.
30 July 2019
Brands are making real headway in tackling climate change and the race against waste, with announcements and initiatives coming almost daily. These are always good news, but new research published by the European Milk Forum suggests that Irish consumers believe that in order to affect real change, the responsibility also lies with everyday shoppers.
The EMF research revealed that just one in 10 people consider their carbon footprint when purchasing food (for example, the distance that product has travelled to make it onto shelves for them). Eight out of 10 believe that to preserve the planet, we need to change “how we consume and produce food”.
Four out of 10 agreed that Ireland’s dairy sector, despite its reputation for the highest-quality dairy products worldwide, has a negative impact on climate change.
Conducted as part of a three-year campaign, “Sustainable Dairy in Europe – safeguarding our resources” the research involving 2,000 consumers in Ireland as well as 2,000 consumers in Belgium, Denmark, France, and the Netherlands, aims to gain an understanding of consumers’ perceptions of sustainability, climate change and the challenges they pose in relation to the dairy sector.
Responding to the results of the survey, National Dairy Council CEO Zoe Kavanagh said that the industry’s ‘Sustainable Dairy in Europe’ project would address these concerns going forward.
“We have a national plan and strategy in place to help Ireland’s agri-food industry and support our farmer’s ambitions to reduce their emissions,” said Kavanagh. “We are continuing to educate the sector on the latest innovations and science-based advice where they can take simple and effective measures across their farms.
“These include adapting use from natural resources,” she added, “such as substituting clover for chemical fertilizer, reducing losses from slurry, incorporating forestry and hedgerows on farms and more.”
According to the research, six out of 10 respondents agree the dairy sector can help consumers eat more sustainably and overall seven out of 10 [68 %] strongly believe Irish dairy products are superior when compared to other countries dairy products across the world.