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The Green Life: Green Your Shopping Habits: Food

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April 29, 2009

Green Your Shopping Habits: Food

Green your food-shopping habits Shopping is an activity so ingrained into our society that we often do it thoughtlessly, automatically, or hurriedly. By paying more attention to how you shop and what you buy, however, you can make a difference for the planet. This week we’re sharing tips about how to green your shopping habits.

Tip #3: Green Your Food-Buying Habits

Did you know that a third of households’ total environmental impact is related to food and drink consumption? To help reduce the footprint of the foods you buy, there are a few things you can do when at the grocery store. First, avoid the deli, since more than a third of all U.S. fossil fuels go toward producing meat, and since animal agriculture is highly correlated with pollution and natural-resource depletion.

Also, be willing to shop in the organic section, since fewer pesticides and other polluting chemicals are used to produce the items sold there. Look, too, for where a product was produced, and when. Buying local and seasonal reduces the miles your food had to be shipped to get to your shopping cart. Examine whether what you’re considering buying is overpackaged; if it is, leave it in the store as a statement of disapproval that'll hit corporations’ bottom lines. Finally, bring your own reusable shopping bags to prevent disposable plastic or paper bags from ending up where they shouldn't.

Tell us: How do you green your food-buying habits?

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