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What is a "food mile"? If I drive a mile with a boot-load of groceries and a lorry drives a mile with several tons of groceries, are they both a "food mile"?

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Jul 21st, 2006 at 05:24:38 AM EST
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This is really a quibble about local distribution. The real problem is the long distances food is transported, and in particular the rapid growth in air transport.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Jul 21st, 2006 at 06:17:34 AM EST
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According to the article the computation includes the miles accrued by people driving to the grocery store, which I think won't be a negligible fraction of the total miles, even if they are a negligible fraction of the tonne-miles.

Well, so tax air fuel.

If you go to google Defra and "food mile" you'll find a recent report showing that "food miles" are an inadequate indicator.

How about tonnes, mile-tonnes and miles?

Finally, in the vein of our biofuels calculation, if the UK wanted to be self-sufficient in food, would they have enough land?

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Jul 21st, 2006 at 06:27:26 AM EST
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Finally, in the vein of our biofuels calculation, if the UK wanted to be self-sufficient in food, would they have enough land?

According to gov statistics the UK is 60% self-sufficient - a much higher percentage than I was expecting.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Jul 21st, 2006 at 08:33:09 AM EST
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As for biofuels, it would be a question of self-sufficient in what kind of food. Stop producing so much meat and bad dairy (at least, intensively), and a lot of area would be freed...

I see your point about the food-miles unit. Not much use.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Jul 21st, 2006 at 12:46:31 PM EST
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