Product CO2e / kg Studies


CO2e / kg
= 100 g of Cheese
You can consume
kg of Cheese to exhaust your daily CO2e food budget

Categories: Dairy | Food

About 60-70% of the CO2e emissions are from the milk production1. To make 1 kg of cheese between 4 and 8 liters of milk are needed, depending on the type of cheese, with softer, young cheeses requiring less milk than harder, aged cheeses2.

Manufacturing (10-20%), retail (5-10%) and consumption (5-10%) make up the majority of the remaining emissions.

  1. Kim, D., Thoma, G., Nutter, D., Milani, F., Ulrich, R., & Norris, G. (2013). Life cycle assessment of cheese and whey production in the USA. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 18(5), 1019-1035. Fig 3 (cheddar) and Fig 4 (mozzarella) 


Subcategories: Paneer | Edam cheese | Gouda cheese | Cheese (eco) | Emmentaler | Cheese (soft) | Cheese (hard) | Cheese (medium-hard) | Buffalo mozzarella | Ricotta | Cheddar | Goat cheese | Blue cheese | Brie | Danish blue | Feta | Grana padano | Asiago cheese | Parmesan cheese | Camembert | Alpine cheese | Mozzarella | Cottage cheese | Cheese (smoked)


Source Notes CO2e Country origin Country consumption Weight
Umweltwirkungen der Ernährung-Ökobilanzierung des Nahrungsmittelverbrauchs tierischer Produkte nach Gesellschaftsgruppen in Deutschland Table 1
Germany Germany 8
RISE Open access list 1.7 Per kg cheese, 31% fat
Sweden Sweden 5
Violife 100% vegan alternative to cheese vs. dairy cheese in Europe, UK, US and Canada. Table 1, page 5. Average over 8 cheese types (mozzarella, cheddar, cream cheese, feta)
Europe Europe 3
Environmental life cycle assessment (LCA) of Swedish semi-hard cheese Hushållsost
Sweden Sweden 8
RIVM Database Milieubelasting Voedingsmiddelen Kaas, 20+
Unknown Netherlands 5
Ökologische Fußabdrücke von Lebensmitteln und Gerichten in Deutschland (IFEU) Käse, Durchschnitt
Unknown Germany 6
Den store klimadatabase Cheese, firm, Danbo, 45 % fidm., Agriculture: 4.46, iLUC: 0.46, Food processing: 2.33, Packaging: 0.35, Transport: 0.12
Unknown Unknown 5
Mat-klimat-listan variation 6-11 kgCo2/kg
Unknown Sweden 6
Klimatarier CO2 Rechner Käse
Unknown Unknown 5
Pendos CO2-Zähler Hartkäse
Unknown Unknown 5
Eco-efficiency in the production chain of Dutch semi-hard cheese Production of 1 kg cheese resulted in a GWP of 8.5 kg CO2-eq., and required 6.8 m2 land and 47.2 MJ energy. Of all stages, on-farm milk production contributed most to GWP (65%), and to land use (58%), followed by cultivation of concentrate ingredients (12% to GWP and 24% to land use).
The type of cheese we studied was eight-week old, semihard cheese, which is the most popular cheese in the Netherlands (Voedingscentrum, 2009).
Netherlands Netherlands 10
Meat eater's guide to climate change + health Table 16. Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Domestic Cheese Production (at farmgate)
Cheese Production System kg of CO2e per kg of edible cheese
Wisconsin 9.09
Table 17. Greenhouse Gas Emission from Domestic Cheese Consumption (post-farmgate)
Emission Source kg of CO2e per kg of consumed cheese
Processing 1.26
Domestic transport 0.30
Refrigeration (retail) 0.05
Home cooking 0.00
Waste disposal 0.10
Total 1.71
Per kg of consumed cheese (includes moisture loss, waste loss and post-farmgate): 13.47 kg CO2e
Potential contributions of food consumption patterns to climate change domestic; CO2: 5, NO2: 1.3, NH4: 4.5
Sweden Sweden 8
Greenhouse gas emissions of realistic dietary choices in Denmark: the carbon footprint and nutritional value of dairy products Table 1; 30+, 31% fat; including waste; excluding waste: 9.23
Unknown Unknown 8
Greenhouse gas emissions of realistic dietary choices in Denmark: the carbon footprint and nutritional value of dairy products Table 1; 20+ 17% fat; including waste; excluding waste: 8.47
Unknown Unknown 8
Reducing food’s environmental impacts through producers and consumers Figure 1
Unknown Unknown 8
Systematic review of greenhouse gas emissions for different fresh food categories Table 5 Median; #LCA studies: 22; #GWP values: 38; Mean: 8.86; Stdev: 2.07; Min: 5.33; Max: 16.35
Unknown Unknown 8


*only recipes with more than 50 grams of Cheese are shown.