Dig In! Highlights from Our “Dish It Out” Event

Did you miss sustainable baker Caroline Saunders’ tips and trends meeting with our Next-Generation Influencer Group? Not to worry—here’s a recap!

The first Next Generation Influencers Group (NGIG) meeting of 2024–‘Dish It Out’–was a GRAPE success! Participants had the unique opportunity to learn firsthand from Caroline Saunders, Le Cordon Bleu-trained baker and founder of climate-friendly baking newsletter Pale Blue Tart, about the environmental impact of their individual food choices .


Thinking sustainably comes second nature to younger generations, who aspire to decarbonize and reduce the environmental footprint of their day-to-day activities.

Green Builder Media’s CEO, Sara Gutterman, kickstarted the conversation by shedding light on this phenomenon among young people, who are strategically making housing decisions to improve their food sustainability efforts.

With almost a third of global greenhouse gas emissions stemming from food production, it’s understandable that young sustainability leaders are eager to make housing decisions that allow them to grow their own food and help with ongoing decarbonization efforts.

This urgency is underscored by the shifting preferences of Millennials and Gen Zs, who increasingly prioritize outdoor living spaces when purchasing a home. According to COGNITION Smart Data, 40% of prospective homeowners prioritize living near a community garden in their decision-making process.

Following this introduction, Saunders launched into her presentation, keeping the audience on their toes with her interesting factoids. Did you know that dark chocolate has a depressingly high carbon footprint? Neither did I, but the learning doesn’t end there.


Saunders goes on to explain that not all food is created equal. For example, adopting agroforestry—a technique where cacao trees are cultivated alongside other tree species—can reduce the carbon footprint of dark chocolate by minimizing land use change. Additionally, it benefits cacao growth by providing shade, improving soil quality, and enhancing biodiversity. A win-win for both dark chocolate enthusiasts and cacao trees.

It’s important to consider the sustainability implications of our food choices. While certain foods, like agroforest-cultivated dark chocolate, offer sustainable alternatives, others do not.

For instance, when comparing plant-based and animal-based diets, it's evident that plant-based diets consistently prove to be more sustainable. Unlike dark chocolate, there isn't much we can do to enhance the sustainability of animal-based diets to make them equivalent to plant-based diets.

This doesn’t mean you have to completely forgo animal products. Instead aim for moderation and choose lower carbon-intensive meats like chicken or turkey.

In the Q&A portion of the event, Saunders emphasizes that there is no “one size fits all” solution to making food more sustainable. She believes that individuals can make sustainable choices that align with their budget and taste preferences. No reason for everyone to run out and become a vegetarian.

Instead, consider buying carbon offsets! Green Builder Media offers high quality offsets that are third-party verified. Now you can enjoy your favorite foods (as long as you've considered sustainable alternatives, of course) and contribute to decarbonization efforts.

And this just barely scratches the surface of the insights gleaned from the 'Dish It Out' event. Stay tuned for a series of bite-sized blogs breaking down the event. And remember, there's no FOMO here—watch the 'Dish It Out' event and experience it for yourself!

Click here to watch!