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Thesis (Master's)

University of Iceland > Þverfræðilegt nám > Umhverfis- og auðlindafræði >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/1946/47058

  • Environmental Impact of Poultry Farming in Iceland: Life Cycle Assessment of Broiler Meat Production
  • Title is in Icelandic Umhverfisáhrif Alifuglaræktunar á Íslandi: Lífsferilsgreining á kjúklingaframleiðslu
  • Master's
  • As the world population grows, so does the production and consumption of emission intensive foods. To reduce the global warming effects from food systems, significant and immediate changes are needed, both by adopting more environmentally sustainable practices and changing diets. To evaluate these strategies in connection to their potential environmental impacts additional research is needed.
    This study aims to assess the environmental impact of broiler meat production in Iceland, which is an important protein source among Icelanders. A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) framework was used to evaluate and analyze eleven impact categories, with a focus on four categories: Global Warming Potential (GWP), Acidification Potential (AP), Eutrophication Potential (EP), and Abiotic Depletion Potential (Fossil Fuel) (ADPF). The system boundary is from cradle to slaughterhouse gate, with the functional unit (FU) of 1 kg broiler chicken (carcass weight). Primary data was gathered from local companies, supplemented with reports published by the Icelandic Environmental Agency and additional literature.
    The results for the following categories were GWP: 2.41 Kg CO2 eq, AP: 0.012 kg SO2 eq, EP: 0.014 kg PO4 eq, and ADPF: 11.8 MJ. Feed production has the greatest environmental impact within the life cycle of poultry production. Most of this impact is caused by only a handful of ingredients (wheat, soybean, and maize), all of which are commonly used in poultry feed. Overall, these results show that the potential environmental impact of Icelandic poultry meat production is lower than many international literature present. Therefore, in order to meet global emission reduction targets, broiler meat should be considered in dietary guidelines as a substitute for other emission intensive meat products.

  • May 14, 2024
  • http://hdl.handle.net/1946/47058

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