Danish green party calls for red meat to be removed from Copenhagen school meals

The environmentalist Alternative party's municipal representation says it supports taking red meat off the menu at daycares, kindergartens and schools in Copenhagen.

Danish green party calls for red meat to be removed from Copenhagen school meals
File photo: Kristoffer Juel Poulsen/Ritzau Scanpix

Franciska Rosenkilde, an Alternative party councillor elected to the municipality in Copenhagen, says the move would reduce emissions, newspaper Politiken reports.

Although local authorities in the capital are already set to launch a strategy to reduce the climate impact of food at municipal institutions, Rosenkilde says she believes the city could go further.

“Red meat has a huge impact on the climate. You can choose freely what to eat at home but as a municipality, we have a responsibility to be ambitious in our environmental behaviour. That’s why I’m proposing we remove red meat from meals in municipal institutions,” she told Politiken.

Specifically, beef and lamb would be off the menu under the proposal, which would not apply to institutions responsible for supplying all meals – for example, retirement homes – but only to those supplying 1-2 meals daily.

The idea was set to be presented to the city council on Thursday as a proposed amendment to an existing municipal meal strategy.

That strategy aims to reduce the environmental impact of Copenhagen Municipality’s food services by 25 percent before 2025. All parties with the exception of the Danish People’s Party support the plan.

READ ALSO: Danish government to increase price of cigarettes

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Why coffee could cost more for Danish consumers in 2022

The price of raw coffee beans recently reached its highest level for ten years, media in Scandinavia report, a trend which is likely to impact consumer prices in the region.

A photo of coffee beans in Denmark. Consumers in the country may soon notice a higher cost per cup.
A photo of coffee beans in Denmark. Consumers in the country may soon notice a higher cost per cup. File photo: Mathias Svold/Ritzau Scanpix

Raw coffee currently costs more than at any time in the last decade, Norwegian financial media E24 reported on Tuesday.

A doubling of the cost per kilo during the last year, reported by E24 in the summer, has been followed by further increased in recent months. The current price of 37 Norwegian kroner (28.3 Danish kroner) per kilogram is the highest for a decade, the media writes.

That is in spite of a strengthening of Norway’s currency against the US dollar, according to E24. The Danish krone is also currently strong.

Because raw coffee beans are always traded in dollars, with prices set by the New York Stock Exchange a strong exchange rate should theoretically make the beans cheaper to import to Nordic countries.

“I think we are seeing a new normal when it comes to the industrial market price of coffee,” Ola Brattås, head of imports with Norwegian chain Kaffebrenneriet, told E24.

Higher prices have already made an impression on Danish coffee companies.

Markets for the product are currently uncertain, said Lars Aaen Thøgersen, head of communication and development with Peter Larsen Kaffe.

“It’s been this way for some time. There has been uncertainty around the harvest, particularly in Brazil,” Thøgersen told news wire Ritzau.

Drought in Brazil, linked to illegal rainforest logging and climate change, is reported by E24 as a key factor in coffee prices. The International Coffee Organization’s September 2021 report also mentions weather in Brazil.

That has compounded higher transport costs and general uncertainty related to the coronavirus pandemic, he added.

Although companies like Peter Larsen can purchase coffee directly from producers and thereby avoid financial markets, they are unable to avoid knock-om effects of high market values, according to Thøgersen.

“When this happens, all supplies around us are affected. So that naturally also affects our situation,” he said.

That means consumers are likely to also feel the effects at some point down the line, the coffee company spokesperson said.

“Consumers can already feel that prices have gone up now, and it will quite likely also be felt further,” he said.

“But it should also be put into perspective, because if you calculate per cup of coffee, a consumer will only notice a few øre (difference in price),” he also noted.

Supermarket chain Coop, which owns the Kvickly, Superbrugsen and Irma stores in Denmark, is currently negotiating 2022 supplier prices. The outcome of those negotiations is not yet known,” head of information Jens Juul Nielsen told Ritzau.

“How this will be felt on store shelves, we can’t yet say,” Nielsen said.

READ ALSO: Denmark’s energy prices hit highest level for nine years