Understand the interaction of Food Price Volatility
Brazils Coffee market as an example
Can we bank on seafood for a healthier food consumption?
In-depth analysis of the european fishing sector
What do European consumers think about
sustainable food?
New Working paper
Can Information about Health and Environment Beef Up the Demand for Meat Alternatives?
New Working paper
Quality, Market Mechanisms and Regulation in the Food Chain
"Focussing on questions related to quality and sustainability regulation in the food chain"
Analysis of crop production in the European Union
by Andrea Zimmermann, WP 4
Partnership Meeting
October 26-27, 2016

"Gain insight in the impact of diet changes to health sustainability". Interview with Jacqueline Bloemhof

Jacqueline Bloemhof is full professor and chair of the Operations Research and Logistics Group at Wageningen University. Her main field of research is sustainable supply chain management, both in forward chains (food and other agricultural distribution networks) and closed loop supply chains (recycling and recovery of products, parts, materials or energy). She published on these topics in a large number of articles in ISI journals in the field of Operations Research and Environmental Science, Engineering and Environmental Sciences.

Understand the interaction of Food Price Volatility. Brazils Coffee market as an example

Volatile food prices have considerable impact on food security, sparkling riots and contributing to political instability, as past shows. Research so far has shown that volatility is caused by a combination of factors like trade restrictions, financial speculations or even an expanding population, biofuel-policies and weather effects.

Analyzing EU crop production: Finding the most important drivers

Crop production is the most crucial primary agricultural production activity for both food and nutrition security. In 2011, around 70 percent of the calories per capita and per day came from plant-based products. Besides, its importance for the direct human consumption, crop production is also crucial for producing feed for livestock and, increasingly, for aquaculture.

Can we bank on seafood for a healthier food consumption? In-depth analysis of the european fishing sector

Seafood is generally a healthy protein alternative in a diet. Official dietary advices often recommend to eating more seafood and vegetables and less beef. At present, seafood accounts for around 17 percent of the global population’s intake of animal protein and nearly 7 percent of all protein consumed. However, there are sustainability challenges remaining for a range of production systems that still need to be resolved.

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Latest Publications

Deliverable 8.3: Forecasting Commodity Prices Under Specification Uncertainty: A Comprehensive Approach

We present a comprehensive modelling framework aimed at obtaining short-term forecasts (one to twelve months ahead) of commodity prices and apply it to short and medium run predictions of Arabica coffee, wheat, soybeans and corn. We entertain a large number of univariate and multivariate time series models, including specifications that exploit information about market fundamentals, macroeconomic and financial developments and climatic variables. A comprehensive set of forecast averaging tools is implemented to explicitly address model uncertainty. Our results indicate that variables measuring market fundamentals and macroeconomic developments (and to a lesser extent, financial developments) contain systematic predictive information for out-of-sample forecasting of commodity prices.

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Deliverable 5.2: Innovation pathways towards future nutrition security: Innovation pathways towards more sustainable production and consumption in the livestock-fish supply chain and their uptake in the SUSFANS models

Our current dietary pattern especially animal source food (ASF), has a strong impact on the environment. Furthermore, in Europe, daily consumption of ASF protein is above dietary recommendation, resulting in an increased risk of chronic non-communicable diseases.The aim of this deliverable was to identify innovations that together can result in a pathway towards sustainable nutrition security by combining production-side strategies (reducing the environmental impact per kg of ASF produced), consumption-side strategies (changing consumption patterns of humans by reducing or replacing ASF), and the circular strategie, (focus on improving the circularity of the food system, and avoiding feed-food competition, and lies in between the production and consumption-side strategies). The paper identifies a set of innovations that has the potential to deliver a pathway towards sustainble healthy diets. These innovations comprise: including insects in livestock and fish feed; reducing meat intake and replacing beef with other ASF products including fish, and including novel protein source e.g. in-vitro meat; a circular strategy centred around using products unfit for human consumption in livestock feed. Data is presented that supports the assessment of the impact of these innovation options on the contribution of ASF in a sustainable and healthy diet, using the SUSFANS toolbox. Similar to this the role of captured seafood - fishing at equilibrium (sustainable yields)- in a suitable diet will be assessed.

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Deliverable 4.6: Spatially explicit farm and environmental indicators at a scale of 1 km x 1 km

Land use diversity and soil erosion are amongst the aggregated variables required for describing environmental sustainability in the domains ‘biodiversity’ and ‘natural resources’. Both aggregated variables need to be quantified at high spatial resolution. The CAPRI model is able to do this, but the calculation procedure required improvements. This report describes basic features of the methodology, scrutinizes deficiencies in the current implementation and identifies possibilities to update and improve the method.

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Deliverable 4.5: The drivers of crop production at regional level in the EU: an econometric analysis

Crop production is the most crucial primary agricultural production activity for both food and nutrition security. Around 70% of the calories per capita and day come from plant-based products. The report provides a qualitative assessment of drivers of crop production and a quantitative analysis of crop yields in the EU. Crop yield trends are largely positive throughout the EU. Average efficiencies in yield exploitation are between 70 and 80% depending on the crop. Climate has mixed effects on crop yields and farm size, fertilizer and plant protection all clearly positively affect crop yields.

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Deliverable 3.3: The role of the post-farm food chain for sustainability indices

The analysis of post-farmgate biomass streams is crucial for accurately quantifying the environmental impact associated with the food that we eat. It is also the pre-requisite for identifying opportunities to move into the direction of an agri-food system with low emissions and with closed nutrient circles. We identified a few areas where a full chain life-cycle assessment was not yet possible with the tools available: slaughterhouses, cereal processing, waste management systems and consumers. In this report we perform a literature review for each of these ‚pools‘ and compile data that can be used in ‚modules‘ that will be implemented for the SUSFANS toolbox. The assessment is based on – and further develops – the framework developed by the UN-ECE for the quantification of national nitrogen budgets.

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Deliverable 2.6: Simulations of diet recommendations and assessment of their economic, environmental and nutritional impacts.

We analyse ex-ante the sustainability effects of diet recommendations in France, Denmark and Finland to conclude that: 1- The promotion of several diet recommendations would improve social welfare; 2- Healthy-eating recommendations targeting consumption of fruits/vegetables, salt and saturated fat should be prioritized for promotion; 3- Although synergies dominate, trade-offs between environmental and health objectives occur in some cases ; and 4- The taste/utility cost of dietary change imposed on consumers should be included in the welfare analysis of diet recommendations.

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Deliverable 3.2: The role of different food chain actors on setting private food standards

Consumers, retailers and producers are giving increasing attention to ensure that production and processing activities are sustainable from an economic, social and environmental point of view. The goal of this task will be to analyze the role different actors in the food supply chain play in the establishment of food standards and their impact on the sustainability of the food supply chain. The analysis will consist of theoretical modelling and an empirical analysis.

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Deliverable 2.5: Consumer choice related to meat/fish consumption and their possible replacement by plant-based products: results from lab experiments and costbenefit analysis

The deliverable D2.5 analyzes the results of lab experiments conducted in France and Italy. We evaluate the impact of different types of information on participants’ willingness-to-pay (WTP) and quantity choices for both beef burger meat and soy burger meat. We conducted a lab experiment in France and Italy to elicit hypothetical WTP with a multiple-price list. Explanatory messages about the impact of beef and soy on health and environment were revealed to participants, before successive rounds of WTP determinations and quantity choices. Results show a very weak impact of successive rounds of messages on WTP for both beef and soy. However, these explanatory messages lead to a significant change in chosen quantities. These results are used for determining a cost-benefit analysis on the basis of a model of diet changes induced by the adoption of nutritional and environmental recommendations. We particularly show how both relative variations in willingness-to-pay (WTP) and relative variations in chosen quantities, following messages revealed in the lab, can be used for a welfare analysis. These variations are integrated in a market equilibrium model, as a possible demand shifter or as a non-internalized damage/benefit when consumers are ignorant. A related cost-benefit analysis studies the welfare impact of a nutritional recommendation or a tax mechanism. Results suggest that these regulatory tools have a significant impact on the variation of welfare and the reduction of beef consumption. 3 working papers provided in annex were written for precisely studying these issues of this deliverable.

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Latest Blog Posts


How can we improve the food system in the EU, especially from the perspective of social, environmental and economic sustainability? How can we balance and encompass views on how to strengthen food and nutrition security in the EU?

These are the core questions of the SUSFANS project. SUSFANS’ overall goal is to come to a better food and nutrition system for human health, the environment and corporate enterprises in Europe.

Sep, 19 2016   0 Comments   Sebastian Eckert