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Iconic dishes could vanish, warns WWF

Some of Britain’s most popular restaurant dishes could change beyond recognition due to climate change, WWF has warned.

A new report from the conservation charity found that a fish and chip takeaway in 2050 could contain anchovies rather than cod as warmer oceans cause those species to displace cod populations.

Other popular dishes such as chicken tikka masala, cheese ploughmans and lamb cawl, a traditional Welsh stew, could see key ingredients replaced or see their cost skyrocket due to extreme weather conditions and diseases. The price of rice, for example, is predicted to rise by a third by 2050.

WWF also calculated the current environmental costs of the four dishes. While the lamb dish was found to contribute most towards climate change, the cheese ploughmans was revealed to contribute more than the fish and chips or chicken tikka masala.

The report’s launch coincides with this year’s Earth Hour which takes place on 24 March at 8.30pm. WWF is asking the British public to make one change in their own lives to reduce their environmental footprint. Pledges include eating less meat, refusing plastic cutlery and carrying a reusable coffee cup.

WWF is also supporting the Sustainable Restaurant Association’s One Planet Plate initiative, whose launch is timed to coincide with Earth Hour.

Chefs including Raymond Blanc, Skye Gyngell and Chantelle Nicholson, will join high street restaurants like Jamie’s Italian, Carluccio’s, Zizzi and Wahaca in serving up dishes that highlight how they are addressing problems in the food system such as waste and excessive consumption of animal protein.