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Source: Blue Apron

Meal Delivery Kits Are More Eco-Friendly Than They Seem, New Study Suggests


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Eco-conscious people usually have the same critique for meal delivery kits: they're too wasteful. The cardboard boxes are filled with endless inner plastic packaging, such as ziplocks carrying one teaspoon of garlic powder and single cucumbers wrapped in shrink wrap. But the meal kit industry's eco-unfriendly reputation may be changing, thanks to a new study, which found that meal delivery kits can actually produce less emissions than shopping at the grocery store.

The study, titled "Comparison of Life Cycle Environmental Impacts from Meal Kits and Grocery Store Meals," was conducted by a team of University of Michigan researchers, lead by Brent Heard, and published on ScienceDirect. For the study, the team conducted a comparative life cycle assessment of meal kits versus ingredients purchased for identical meals at the grocery store. They looked at a few key factors when measuring the meals' life cycles, including: greenhouse gas emissions, acidification, eutrophication, land use, water use, packaging, distribution, and disposal processes for food waste and packaging.