Stakeholder Engagement

SUSFANS is addressing a wide range of issues connected to diets and European food systems, i.e. public health, stability and resilience, resource scarcity and the sustainability in terms of environmental, social and economic considerations.

We seek engagement around this agenda with a wide range of actors engaged in the activities from growing to producing and ultimately consuming food, and the provision of input and dealing with waste. They operate within, and are influenced by, a number of ‘environments’ (i.e. government policies, markets, science and technology, social organisations and biophysical conditions), all of which have their own galaxy of stakeholders with a range of motivations.

Broadly speaking these fall into three main stakeholder ‘types’: those engaged in (i) food system activities; (ii) food system policy; and (iii) food system influences (Table 1).


Table 1. Mapping of food system stakeholders with relevance to SUSFANS

Three stakeholder types and their main categories

Food System Activities

Food System Policy

Food System Influences

Agricultural input suppliers

Primary producers (crops; livestock products;
fish and aquaculture; fruit and vegetables a.o.)

Ingredient companies

Processors and packers

Transport and logistics


Food service sector

Commodity traders

EU-level policy makers

National-level and regional level policy makers







Health sector organizations

Consumer groups

Environmental groups

Academic and training institutions

Certification or auditing organisations

Finance sector

Overseas Development sector


Source: SUSFANS communication plan


The concept for narrowing down the potential list of stakeholders is threefold, as explained in deliverable 6.1 (The SUSFANS Stakeholder Core Group, drawn across different sectors and roles in European sustainable food and nutrition security):

  • Critical stakeholders are to be found among key agents of change, i.e. organisations with the ability to help shape a transformation of the food systems or inform the process with leading opinions. Such agents are found in business, government, civil society and academia.
  • The agent’s roles of interest to SUSFANS include all food system actors; nutrition and health specialists; government at EU and lower levels; and intergovernmental bodies; experts from various disciplines.
  • SUSFANS is focused on developing knowledge ‘tools’, i.e. metrics, models and foresight. A leading criterion is which key stakeholder organizations will be using the tools (in particular the modelling toolbox) and their insights, and that can possibly contribute to the tool development?