According to the report “Nordic food systems for improved health and sustainability: Baseline assessment to inform transformation (2019)”, there are sufficient data on Nordic food systems to understand the crucial action areas and to begin taking immediate steps towards food systems transformations. A transformation implies a journey into aspects partly unknown and untested. The report highlights the complementarity of scientific assessment and normative dialogue on this journey.
Dietitians and Nutritionists (D-Ns) are key to this! From the report:
Food system actors would benefit from building a common understanding of desired pathways towards transformation, which should be informed by the best available evidence. This can be achieved through sustained, cross-sectoral (e.g. policy, business, research, civil society, producer, consumer) stakeholder dialogues. It is particularly important to include stakeholders who are often marginalized in these types of collaborative decision-making processes.
There will be challenges to initiating these changes, such as adopting a ‘whole food system’ approach; addressing trade-offs among food system goals; and confronting prevailing forces and lock-ins. Yet these challenges should not be an excuse for inaction.
- Food systems should be a critical lever of change in the Nordics to reach global health and environmental sustainability commitments.
- The gap between current and desired food systems is substantial enough to require transformative change.
- An integrated food systems approach aligning agricultural, production, trade, manufacturing, retailing and consumption priorities must be taken.
- There is enough evidence on necessary food system changes to begin action in setting current food systems on a trajectory towards healthy and sustainable development.
- Sustained, multi-sectoral forums are needed to steer Nordic food system transformation.
- Begin immediate action to transform Nordic food systems
- Initiate a multi-stakeholder scenario development process to define a common vision for Nordic food systems
- Develop strategies to handle the trade-offs of change
- Evaluate Nordic food systems in the global context
Acknowledgement: This page is an extracted from the introduction to the report.