Climate-friendly food and consumer behaviour

Published 18 february 2022

Current Danish food consumption is an obstacle to Denmark’s ambition of taking the lead in climate change mitigation, as the Danes have one of the largest climate footprints from food consumption per capita. The average Dane eats more than double the amount of animal-based food compared to the global average, and also eats more meat and dairy products than the European average. This means that the climate impact of Danish food consumption exceeds the sustainable level seen from a global perspective.

The aim of this analysis is to identify the barriers to an increased climate-friendly diet in Denmark and to identify potential instruments to reduce these barriers. The Danish Council on Climate Change (DCCC) proposes various measures that can accelerate the transition to more climate-friendly food consumption in Denmark. In addition, the purpose of the analysis is to estimate the climate effect if all Danes changed to a climate-friendly diet. The analysis focuses on reducing Danish consumption-based emissions, which is another way of accounting for Denmark’s climate impact instead of measuring territorial emissions. Binding international obligations and national targets, such as the Danish 70 per cent reduction target in 2030, are based on Denmark’s territorial emissions.