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One Step Closer to Sustainable Food Systems

As the VALUMICS project comes to its end, the project team, partners and other stakeholders, came together to share and reflect on four years of joint work. The final event held in September 2021 was an opportunity to think about how to upscale the positive impact of VALUMICS beyond the project’s life cycle.

Throughout the last four years, the VALUMICS project has worked toward providing European decision makers with approaches and tools to evaluate the impact of policies and strategies for enhancing the resilience, integrity and sustainability of food value chains in Europe.

It took a holistic and causality-based system approach to capture and understand the dynamics and interactions in the food system from farm to fork actors, including other supra positioned ones, such as policy makers. If you would like to learn more about the project and its outcomes, please have a look at the diverse set of outputs on its website.

As part of VALUMICS, the CSCP has worked on analysing consumer behaviour and its role in the food system as well as find pathways for shifting consumption towards healthier and more sustainable patterns. Food is the number one driver of negative sustainability impacts generated by household consumption in the EU today, of which animal-based products, such as meat, dairy and eggs, account for more than 50% of most of these impacts, including toxicity to human health, climate change and land use.

While the majority of people declare their intention to eat healthier and more sustainably, the share of sustainable food consumption is still very low in Europe. There is a clear intention-action gap, thus the question remains: how can we close it and generate real behaviour change?

A four-part publication series authored by the CSCP and other project partners tries to answer this question by forging a better understanding of the nature, role, and peculiarities of consumer behaviour:

  1. The report ‘Food consumption behaviour in Europe’  provides an overview of the food sector in the context of sustainability from a demand perspective by looking at food consumption patterns, behavioural drivers, trends and barriers to change connected to it.
  2. The report Putting solutions on the table’ analyses and showcases the latest and most compelling pieces of evidence about behaviourally-informed interventions that have supported a shift towards more sustainable and healthier diets in real-life contexts.
  3. The report Behaviour change interventions for more sustainable food consumption’ outlines three food retailer interventions conducted for the purpose of understanding opportunities and challenges to drive sustainable food consumption at the retail level.
  4. The report ‘From intention to action’ report discusses a set of recommendations addressed to various stakeholder groups and aimed at supporting more sustainable food consumption behaviours and patterns at the consumer level.

Would you like to take a glance at the VALUMICS publication series? Check out the video below!

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So, what’s next? The transition towards fair, healthy, and sustainable food systems is more urgent that ever. This requires solutions that are built on holistic, systemic and multi-stakeholder principles. We are actively engaged in the conversation and committed to make this transition happen quickly and on a great scale. You too? Reach out to us and let’s  drive positive change together!

If you are keen on engaging in a discussion with us or have further questions, please reach out to Cristina Fedato.