Responsible Partner: SIFO OsloMEt (HiOA)
Amilien, V., Roos, G., Arfini, F., Biasini, B., Csillag, P., Duboys de Labarre, M., Filipović, J., Haugrønning, V., Kuč, V., La Spina, M., Menozzi, D., Meyer, K., Ognjanov, G., Simons, J., Tocco, B., Török, Á., Veljković, S., Wavresky, P.
Date of Publication: September 2018

This report provides a summary of the activities conducted as part of Task 8.2 of the Strength2Food (S2F) project. The objective of this work is to deepen current understanding on European consumers’ food practices concerning food quality schemes (FQS) and linked to sustainable food chains. Using a qualitative approach and extensive ethnographic fieldwork in six families across seven European countries (France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Serbia and the UK) we were able to observe households’ food practices across different seasons. This research aims to better understand if, and how, everyday food practices are connected with FQS and sustainable food chains.

This task is part of Work Package 8 on consumer analysis, which aims at providing a thorough understanding regarding consumers’ knowledge, perception, confidence and valuation of EU/national/regional food quality labels as well as their food practices and purchasing behaviour with respect to products promoted by those schemes, across different consumer groups, food cultures and settings. Special emphasis was placed on identifying and understanding the potential gaps between consumers’ stated valuation and their actual food practices, including 1) planning, 2) purchasing, 3) using/cooking/eating and 4) disposal. Moreover, the study also looked at labelled products and public procurement measures to promote sustainable food chains, as well as consumers’ perceptions and requests regarding additional or adjusted policy measures.

This report is a common work, based on seven independent country reports which were prepared following a structured methodological guideline which was discussed and decided together with the whole team from Task 8.2. This deliverable could not have been produced without all partners’ enthusiasm and serious participation, in preparation to the fieldwork, during the fieldwork and, last but not least, following the fieldwork for the analysis and discussion of results.

This report is divided into three complementary parts: Chapters 1 to 5 set up the skeleton of the report, presenting both the reasons and the context of the study. Chapters 6 to 8 constitute the flesh of the study, describing the fieldwork and presenting the analysis and results. The last Chapters, from 9 to 12, constitute the neurological dimension, or synthesis, of the study.
The study adopts a constructivist perspective acknowledging that food practices are a complex network of interpersonal relations, systems, families, objects, individuals, situations and time.

This report aims at answering the following research questions:

  • How are FQS used and how do they relate to everyday food practices?
  • How are consumer perceptions and practices towards FQS linked to different contexts?
  • What is the cultural meaning of FQS in everyday life food consumption practices?
  • How can our knowledge about FQS and few European families’ perceptions and practices be used to enhance environmental, cultural and social sustainability for future generations?

Click here to see the full report