Fruit, berries and vegetables have a very different environmental impact depending on how and where they are grown and how perishable they are. Coarse, hardy vegetables are often grown outdoors and therefore have a lower climate impact than vegetables grown in greenhouses. Coarse vegetables can also be stored for longer than perishable vegetables such as tomato, lettuce and cucumber.
The biggest climate impact from greenhouse cultivation comes from heating. The fuel used for heating has a direct impact on how much greenhouse gases the production generates. Generally, outdoor cultivation requires less energy compared to greenhouse production, but has a higher energy consumption than traditional agricultural crops.
In recent years, it has been noted that many of the fruits and vegetables consumed in Sweden are grown under poor working conditions. This is particularly true in production in low-cost countries in the southern hemisphere, but also in the production of vegetables in southern Europe. In Sweden, berry picking has attracted attention in recent years due to poor working conditions and low wages, or no payment of salary. Contracting authorities can demand that suppliers ensure that basic working conditions are guaranteed.
Overall, Swedish self-sufficiency in cultivation of fruit and vegetables is about 20%. There are therefore substantial imports of fruit and vegetables to Sweden. However, there are significant differences depending on the product. For example, for carrots self-supply is about 90% while some products, such as bananas and citrus fruits, cannot be grown in Sweden.
Subject of procurement
Sustainably produced fruit and vegetables.