Life Cycle Impact Assessment of Carrot Cultivation and Processing: An Italian Case Study for a Small Family Company in the Marche Region
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Carrot environmental impact assessment was conducted using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method (ISO 14040:2006; 14044:2006) and following Product Category Rules (PCR) on arable crops. SimaPro® has been used for impact assessment calculation. Goal and scope: the goal was to assess the impact of 1 kg of carrots for different packaging solutions. Life Cycle Inventory (LCI): was carried out with primary data provided by the farmers and by the processing company through interviews and consultation of official documents. Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA): was carried out using CML_IA characterization model. Interpretation: results obtained were interpreted highlighting the phases of greatest impact through a contribution analysis, and the impact variability due to data uncertainties through an uncertainty analysis. The potential impact for the Global Warming (GW) category varies between 1.2 × 10−1and 2.1 × 10−1 kg CO2 eq, for Acidification (AC) between 7.04 × 10−4 and 1.06 × 10−3 kg SO2 eq, for Ozone Depletion (OP) between 2.89 × 10−5 and 5.25 × 10−5 kg C2H4 eq, for Eutrophication (EP) between 2.19 × 10−4 and 3.05 × 10−4 kg PO43−. The greatest impacts were recorded for products with smaller sizes (0.5 kg trays). For larger formats the most impactful phase is field cultivation while for the smaller ones is packaging. As far as transport is concerned, the greatest impact is on the product coming from Mesola and not from Sicily, this is due to greater loading efficiency of transportation from Sicily.
KeywordsLCA Horticulture Vegetables Environmental sustainability Comparative assessment
The activity presented in the paper has been conducted inside a bachelor’s degree research program. The authors are grateful to the company C.I.L.P.O. DI VECCHIARELLI MARIO & C. S.N.C. that provided the necessary data for the analysis.
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