Assessment of climate and environmental impacts of reduction of food waste and eating according to nutrition recommendations until 2030
Food consumption is one of the major contributors to the climate impact of consumers. Food and wastewater from housing cause almost entire consumer-origin eutrophication impact of waterbodies. How large decrease in environmental impacts of diet and agriculture can be achieved by changing diet and agricultural practises? How this would affect human nutrition and agricultural productionconditions? What kind of policy mixes are needed to achieve the change?
FoodMinmum explores these issues. FoodMimimum is funded by The Finnish Government’s analysis, assessments and research activities (2/2018-1/2019). The project is led by Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) and carried out in an interdisciplinary collaboration with the Finnish Environmental Institute (SYKE).
Sustainable diet is built on healthiness
Several factors affect the sustainability of food consumption and production. A balanced, healthy diet is, however, the pillar for it. Environmental impacts from food production (and consumption) should be handled based on this ground. While domestic food consumption is a main contributor to the environmental impacts caused by national agricultural production, amount of food waste and export also contribute to it. Food import, instead, contributes to the environmental impacts of diet. Beyond healthiness of diet and environmental impacts food security belongs to sustainability of food system. [MK1]
Foodminimum considers interactions
Foodminimum explores interactions between above mention issues. Food Minimum assesses the ways in which to mitigate climate impacts and eutrophication without compromising the healthiness of diets. We assess the climate impacts of several alternative diets as well as their impacts on the Finnish agricultural production. We consider also how the political goal of doubling the food export plays out for various dietary scenarios and for climate impacts. We produce also an estimation of how reduction of food waste affects greenhouse emissions.
Policy mixes for change
Policy instruments based on informational measures, such as dietary guidelines informational campaigns, are currently the most widely used instruments for promoting sustainable eating or reduction of e food waste. Novel, more transformative measures and better understanding of policy coherence is however needed for sustainable dietary shift and reduction of food waste. The FoodMinimum creates policy mixes, that evaluate the applicability, acceptability and efficiency of various measures from the point of view of different food chain actors.