‘Hampers’ as an effective strategy to shift towards sustainable diets in South African low-income communities
Transitioning towards sustainable diets is imperative to avoid the worst effects of climate change, environmental degradation, and malnutrition. In South Africa, households most vulnerable to food insecurity employ various strategies to access food. These include purchasing hampers; a combination of staple foods sold in bulk at a discounted price, which are cake wheat flour, super maize meal, white sugar, cooking oil, and white parboiled rice.
We explore the barriers and opportunities for hampers to advance sustainable diets in the context of Cape Town. Our findings show hampers contain energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods. Furthermore, we find that brand loyalty plays an important role in households’ purchase of hampers. We conclude there is potential to leverage hampers to become a sustainable strategy through which people can access healthier food by working with retailers to offer nutritious and sustainably produced alternatives. Such change would require challenging retailers’ and consumers’ understanding of what ‘necessities’ are.
Research news | 2024-02-20
Having good neighbours and few top predators make predatory fish populations more resilient
A regime shift is gradually spreading through the archipelagos of the Swedish Baltic Sea coast, where shallow bays, previously dominated by pike and perch have one by one become dominated by one of their prey species, the three-spined stickleback.
Research news | 2024-02-08
Eating new plant-based foods can be good for the environment, your health and your economy
Replacing animal-source foods with plant-based alternatives or whole foods decreases environmental impact, meets nutrition recommendations, and can be cost-competitive with the current average Swedish diet
Research news | 2024-01-29
Bird AI and sailing drones – green game changers for marine ecosystems
Groups of guillemots on an island in the Baltic Sea have unknowingly inspired how marine research can be done. Two AI-powered research projects can change how to monitor marine ecosystems – and potentially manage them in real-time
Research news | 2024-01-24
Centralised social networks can hinder innovation by making decision-making too similar
Social systems where influence is centred around one or two individuals can lead to pack mentality and groupthink in farming communities
Research news | 2024-01-23
Planetary Commons: Fostering global cooperation to safeguard critical Earth system functions
We should look at tipping elements of the Earth system as global commons, argue researchers in a new paper published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Research news | 2024-01-22
Soy: A world journey from success to uncertainty
From a bean valued for its multitude of functions in ancient China to one of the most traded agricultural commodities of the modern world: the soybean has gone through dramatic changes throughout the millennia.