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Global emissions are way off target: what needs to happen
The emissions gap has grown significantly since 2010, when the first Emissions Gap Report was produced by the United Nations Environment Programme. A comment in Nature led by my colleague Niklas Höhne, professor at the University of Wageningen, reflected on these increases. Our a
Ordering the vegetarian meal? There's more animal blood on your hands
Being vegetarian saves cows’ lives, but threatens the future of other sentient creatures...
The Food Waste Challenge: Increase Sustainability & Reduce costs | Infographic
Reducing food waste is profitable from three points of view. Saving costs, protecting resources and fighting hunger. Take a look at this infographic to see what Testo has to say about their take on food waste...
Media Release on Foot-And-Mouth Disease: Update
In summary: On 1 November 2019, veterinary services were alerted to clinical signs suspicious for Foot-and Mouth disease (FMD) in a herd of cattle on a farm in the Molemole local municipality of the Capricorn district, Limpopo...
How can I reduce food waste through effective inventory management?
You may have noticed that food waste is trending on many media channels recently. This is an international crisis which we as the food industry must urgently address. It is not only an ethical discussion but consider how many Rands does your business throw into waste every year?
How 26 Percent of Participants Transferred Bacteria from Raw Chicken to Their Salads
The debate on whether or not to wash raw poultry is a fierce one, but until recently it was not a debate backed by science. A recent study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) further demonstrates that individuals are putting themselves at risk of illness when they wash
Clean THEN Sanitize: A One-Two Punch to Stop Foodborne Illness in the Kitchen
You’re about to sit down to a nice meal with a freshly cooked chicken breast. You have your dishes in the dishwasher and you’ve finished wiping down your surfaces. You’re done in your kitchen, right? Wrong! Whenever you cook raw meat or poultry, make sure you clean AND sanitize n
5 Meaningful ways to reduce household waste
5 Meaningful Ways to Reduce Household Waste...
Award-winning plastic pollution research
PhD candidate Takunda Chitaka has been investigating exactly what is being washed up on Cape Town's beaches, from straws and sweet wrappers to bottle lids and cotton bud sticks.
Sustainability and the Straw
Food Focus caught up with KFC this month following the news of their commitment to eliminating plastic straws in their 900 restaurants this month. We wanted to find out more about their sustainability efforts.
Sending surplus food to charity is not the way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
Giving food that would otherwise go to landfill to hungry people does little to ensure the well-being of Canadians who are food insecure.
Why the Indian Ocean is spawning strong and deadly tropical cyclones
The Indian Ocean has made its mark on the global news cycle this year. In March, tropical cyclone Idai made headlines as one of the most severe storms to have made landfall in Mozambique. Current estimates indicate that more than 1,000 people died.
WHO says climate change could have ‘considerable’ food safety impact
Climate change is likely to have considerable impact on food safety, placing public health at risk, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
In 100 years’ time, maybe our food won’t be grown in soil
It takes a lot to make a room of soil scientists gasp. Last month, I presented at the National Soils Conference in Canberra, and asked 400 colleagues a simple question: do you think soil will play as significant a role in food production in 100 years as it does today?
Crisis proofing South Africa’s water security
South Africa is often referred to as the 30th driest country in the world, a claim that’s based on its average annual rainfall of 500mm compared to the world average of 860mm. National rainfall averages have a purpose...
Yes, eating meat affects the environment, but cows are not killing the climate
Removing animals from agriculture would lower national greenhouse gas emissions to a small degree, but it would also make it harder to meet nutritional requirements. Many critics of animal agriculture are quick to point out that if farmers raised only plants, they could produce m
How changing the world’s food systems can help to protect the planet
Going into debt with nature is a dangerous thing. When our stocks of water, land and clean air are spent – we don’t have a second planet to borrow from. But that’s exactly the way that Earth is heading.
African countries aren’t doing enough to prepare for rising sea levels
Sea levels are rising around the world. In the last quarter century, on the north-eastern African coastline, sea levels have risen by as much as 12cm. The future looks even more worrying.
Climate change, water and the spread of diseases: connecting the dots differently
Half a century ago concerns about climate change, environment vulnerability, population density and the sustainability of earth systems reached a broad audience. This was clear from books like the Silent Spring published in 1962, and The Limits to Growth published 10 years later.
Does South Africa have a microplastics problem? Our research says yes
The dangers of plastics, and more specifically microplastics, is increasingly grabbing the world’s attention. A growing body of research shows that plastics and microplastics in the marine environment are having a devastating effect on life in the sea.
Seeing food wasted makes us mad - But should it?
There is currently a grand consensus of academics, policymakers and food campaign groups that “something must be done” to reduce food wastage. Malnutrition is real, but so too is the obesity crisis.
Environmental Monitoring Program: 8 Questions Every EMP Should Answer
Ready-to-eat (RTE) food safety recalls and outbreaks due to product contamination of Listeria monocytogenes from the environment are devastating to affected consumers and their families, the originating food plants, and the food industry.
Plastic Is Killing our Oceans the Issues, Facts, and Possible Solutions
Approximately 40% of the world’s 7.6 billion people live within 62 miles (100km) of an ocean coast. For the other 60%, some of whom may never have even seen an ocean, the seas still play a vital role in their lives. Most importantly, the ocean is vital to the food chain.
Companies Must Push Harder on Achieving Sustainability Goals
While 69% of companies ask suppliers to effectively manage their environmental impacts, only 34% actually provide tools and resources to incentivize action.
Down the drain how water leakage affects us and what we can do about it
37% of water in our urban piped water systems leaks out or is used illegally”. That’s more than a third of our country’s water, going down the drain. With the water crisis in the Cape, looming water concerns across the world, and a growing population, this figure remains far too
Bold steps are needed toward a 'new normal' that allocates water fairly in South Africa
Discussions of the water crisis that has hit Cape Town tend to focus on supply and demand. In other words, a severe and unusual drought has created a situation in which there is not enough water (supply) to meet people’s needs (demand).
Shortcuts in waste disposal adding to SA’s massive environmental challenges
Unlike many developed countries around the globe that operate within a regenerative system called a “circular economy,” South Africa only recycles 10% of its waste. Considering that most of our waste is destined for landfills, the promotion of responsible disposal practices remai
How Cape Town’s water crisis could make people sick
Day zero, when the 4 million people living in Cape Town run out of water, is becoming a real possibility. The city has informed residents that water supplies will be turned off on the day and only retained for high risk areas and essential services. Citizens will have to queue fo
Africa needs to invest more in its water professionals
The African continent is disproportionately affected by extreme climate and issues such as water stress. If governments are serious about overcoming these challenges, they must focus on developing and supporting highly-skilled water professionals
Summer rain can’t wash away business’s water crisis
Summer rains are not going to wash away South Africa’s water crisis and organisational planning to manage enduring water shortages and rising water costs has now become urgent. The water alert to business has been sounded by Environmental Resources Management (ERM), a global lead
South Africa needs good water management - not new water laws
Because water is shared by everyone, there have to be some rules to govern the way it is used. But it’s a difficult resource and when things go wrong, the temptation is to blame the unpredictable water – or the rules.
Webinar | Implementing water saving measures in your food facility
How does a company implement water saving measures, is the government involved in this, how do you get your team on board with water saving measures, what are the challenges and the risks? All of these are questions which are increasingly important for food facilities in the curr
What is SASSI and why should you care?
According to the World Wildlife Fund, in South Africa, many linefish species are overexploited or have collapsed. Often significant amounts of bycatch are caught and thrown back. Some survive, but many don’t. SASSI exists to inform and educate all participants in the seafood trad
When Disasters Strike: Planning and Preparing for Emergencies
Recent events worldwide – hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires – have everyone thinking about emergency response. Is your business prepared if disaster strikes?
People, planet, profit, plate your restaurant sustainability checklist
Almost everywhere we go, we hear the same message: small changes and efforts can make a big difference! Here are 15 to inspire you in your restaurant!
Modern Change Management: Planning for Environmental Compliance
A comprehensive management of change process is critical to ensuring efficient and effective facility upgrades, expansions or process improvements.
Consumers, not supermarkets, need empowering to tackle the food waste crisis
Consumers, not supermarkets, need empowering to tackle the food waste crisis, or so say expert psychologists. A new trans-national research study has set out the key psychological drivers that lead to consumers wasting food.
The Cost of Pollution: 1.7 Million Children Dead Each Year
Every year, environmental risks – such as indoor and outdoor air pollution, secondhand smoke, unsafe water, lack of sanitation and inadequate hygiene – take the lives of 1.7 million children under age 5, say two new reports from the World Health Organization (WHO)
Healthy soil is the real key to feeding the world
One of the biggest modern myths about agriculture is that organic farming is inherently sustainable. It can be, but it isn’t necessarily. After all, soil erosion from chemical-free tilled fields undermined the Roman Empire and other ancient societies around the world
How to be a water-saving superhero
97% of the world’s water supply contained in the oceans leaving only 3% fresh water available for consumption and use. Today is World Water Day, so here are some more interesting (and concerning) facts about water
Have you checked your water quality lately?
If you have been watching the Vaal dam levels you would have seen the amazing change over the last few months from severe water restrictions to possibly too much water. The recent drought should have brought about significant water savings in your facility, but just because these
Why Going Green Can Bring in the Green $$$
At times it can be difficult to have a common-sense discussion about the relationship between business and the natural environment. The discourse tends to be highly charged, and the opposing camps seem to have lost the ability to listen to each other.
Tackling the food waste challenge with technology
Innovation in packaging and refrigeration can reduce waste – as can changes in behaviour. The challenges of the 21st century will stretch our collective capacity for innovation like never before. Take food security...
Drought in southern Africa points to urgent need for climate change plans
It is expected that temperatures in southern Africa will rise to between 1.5°C and 3°C due to climate change by the year 2050. This is likely to cause heavy fluctuations of weather patterns and more frequent severe weather events like droughts and floods. Agriculture will be seve
10 Green Tips - Toolbox Talk
We should all be doing our bit to reduce our impact on the environment. As an employer, you can use this toolbox talk to mobilise your employees to play their part too. They might even help you save some money
Why does soil matter (Infographic)
We celebrate World Soil Day on 5 December - but what is it about soil that is so important? This infographic will give you a few thought-provoking facts about why soil matters so much.
5 Benefits of the Revised ISO 14001 (Infographic)
Discover the benefits of the revised ISO 14001
The new ISO 14001 standard and you
Why was ISO 14001 revised? According to the International organisation for standardization (ISO), all ISO standards are reviewed and revised regularly to make sure they remain relevant to the marketplace. This article explores some of these changes
SANS/ISO 50001 - links between sustainability and HACCP
Need to be more energy efficient? That is a rhetorical question. Andrew Murry explains how a ISO energy management standard can assist you.
Sustainability for the long haul - a case study special edition
Sustainable manufacturing and processing, which reduces raw materials waste and minimizes refuse, is more than a passing trend for companies both large and small during this economic recession. As companies using such practices see it, sustainability attracts consumers. But more
Is increasing obesity contributing to the water shortage - virtual water in the food basket
With water restrictions looming yet again, the question has to be asked - what is the food industry doing about this scarce and precious resource. Well firstly - do you know how much you are using and how much you are wasting in your process?
Industry is Reducing its Ecological Footprint
What are some secrets to achieving greater financial success with lower production costs, improving product function and quality, and increasing market share? How do we improve environmental performance, develop better relationships with stakeholders, and lower risks? According t
Take the environmental test
We have all seen the photos on some TV programme about the masses of waste that is going to landfill daily, polluting rivers and the sea. What is you company doing about this? It’s not as difficult as you think. This article provides you with a handy checklist for audit your faci
What should you being doing about the water crisis?
So with water restrictions looming again we take a look at what you can do about this crisis. Use our handy checklist to make sure you have considered easy to implement practices
War on waste water in dairy processing
In a country where water is such a precious commodity, the need to more to use this resources responsibly is obvious. Check your performance against best practice industry guidelines developed by the World Bank and IFC.