Opportunities emerging from consumer led changes - David Pearson

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  • 1. Opportunities emerging from consumer led changestowards a more ‘climate friendly’ diet Associate Professor David Pearson Email: david.pearson@canberra.edu.au Phone: +61 (2) 6201 5720 Faculty of Arts and Design, University of Canberra CCRSPI Conference Melbourne, 15-17 Feb, 2011 CRICOS #00212K
  • 2. Why focus on consumption? (GECAFS 2011) CRICOS #00212K
  • 3. Consumer views... • Put plants on your plate – (ie reduce meat consumption) • Reach for real food – (ie minimal processing), • Send packaging packing & Finish your peas – (ie reduce food waste ) • DIY food – (ie grow your own, reclaim kitchen) • Lean towards local • Dont panic, go organic CRICOS #00212K
  • 4. Government action...High priority areas:• ↓ consumption of meat products• ↓ consumption of dairy products• ↓ consumption of food/drink of low nutritional value• ↓ food wasteLower priority areas:• ↓ out of season fruits and vegetables• ↓ consumption of non-sustainable fish• ↓ consumption of non-organic foods• ↓ energy input from purchasing and preparation• ↓ consumption of bottled water (SDC 2009) CRICOS #00212K
  • 5. Research methodology• Focus group discussions (Pearson et al. 2010) – 30 students• Online questionnaire (Pearson et al. In press) – 160 household food buyers 75% women – Canberra with higher income and education – Range of ages CRICOS #00212K
  • 6. Key research findings• The environment is very important to food buyers – most (96%) would like to lead a more environmentally friendly lifestyle – many (53%) think about the environment when make choices about food CRICOS #00212K
  • 7. Food buyer behaviour 14 12Consumers already doing (%) 10 8 6 4 2 0 ↓ junk food ↓ meat ↓ food waste ↓ dairy Most important components of a sustainable diet #00212K CRICOS
  • 8. Food buyer behaviour 18 16Consumers already doing (%) 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 ↓ bottled water ↓ non- ↓non-seasonal ↓ energy use ↓ non-organic sustainable fish produce food Most important components of a sustainable diet CRICOS #00212K
  • 9. Implications for primary industries• Potential benefits from enhancing understanding between primary producers and consumers – eg how climate change information influences consumer choice• Develop products for a ‘climate friendly diet’ – Premium branded products, similar to health driven ‘lite’ dairy products & ‘lean’ meat – Substitutes for products with reducing demand CRICOS #00212K
  • 10. Future research• undertake industry/product specific case studies to identify opportunities for – product innovations for climate friendly diet – corporate social responsibility initiatives CRICOS #00212K
  • 11. Conclusion:• There would appear to be benefits from a food system with a web of well connected and well informed producers and consumers• Patterns of demand for some primary products may change due to consumer engagement with climate change issues• Primary producers may plan long term enterprise mix with demand for some products increasing whilst others decrease CRICOS #00212K
  • 12. Questions and comments... CRICOS #00212K
  • 13. Acknowledgements:The contribution from my colleague Sandy Robinson is gratefully acknowledged.In addition this research has received support from:- Global Studies and Sustainable Food Research Cluster at the University of Canberra- Rural Industries Research and Development CorporationReferences:SDC, 2009. Setting the table: Advice to Government on priority elements of sustainable diets. Sustainable Development Commission, London.Friel, S., Dangour, A., Garnett, T., Lock, K., Chalabi, Z., Roberts, I., Butler, A., Butler, C., Waage, J., McMichael, A., Haines, A., 2009. Public health benefits of strategies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions: food and agriculture. Lancet November, 46-55.GECAFS, 2011. Components of the food system, Global Environmental Change and Food Systems http://www.gecafs.org/research/food_system.htmlLea, E., Worsley, A., 2007. Australian consumers food-related environmental beliefs and behaviours. Appetite 50, 207-214.Pearson, D., Henryks, J. and Rowe, P. 2010. Sustainable consumption in Australia: What do Generation Y consumers know about their food choices? Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy (ANZMAC) Conference, Christchurch New Zealand, 29 Nov – 2 Dec.Pearson, D. Rowe, P., and Minehan, M. In press -2011. Sustainable diets: What are consumers already doing and what will they do? 2nd World Social Marketing Conference, Dublin, 11-13 April. CRICOS #00212K