Hidden Cost Café

Carbon dioxide released from food production contributes to climate change. Participants create their own meal and experiment with the carbon footprint of their food choices.

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  • Energy Use
  • Food
  • Land Use
  • Transportation


How to Get this Kit

If you would like to borrow a CUSP climate change education kit, contact Pat McShea at Please make requests at least one week in advance. Loans may be scheduled up to two months in advance.

Big Questions

  • What are the steps involved in bringing food to your table?
  • What is the climate impact of each of these steps?
  • How can we make food choices that reduce our impact on greenhouse gasses and reduce our reliance on resources that will be scarce in the future?

User Reviews

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Learn More

Life cycle analyses on food items are really long and complicated because most food products involve lots of independent organizations which may or may not report data. What we do know is that the more steps a product takes in the industrial food system, the more impact it has on carbon release and greenhouse gasses.

For more information and lifecycle analysis on animal products go to:

For more general information about how carbon footprints are calculated visit the Food Emissions Calculator