ImageWP4: Food-box schemes: convenience and sustainability.

Research questions

  • In what ways are food-box schemes part of families’ everyday food habits?
  • To what extent is the food in box schemes understood as sustainable?
  • How are different types of food knowledge used in these families’ food practices?
  • How are different practical moralities about sustainability, health and convenience negotiated in relation to culturally-approved notions of ‘proper’ food provisioning, cooking and eating?

WP4 focuses on the food habits and understandings of Danish households who subscribe to food-box schemes that attempt to combine ‘convenience’ with sustainability measures such as organic and/or local products with less transport, packaging and food waste.

In Denmark, the inclusion of convenience foods has become a ‘normal’ part of household provisioning. At the same time, ‘convenience’ foods are morally contested due to their poor health connotations and their contrast with normative ideas of ‘proper’ family meals consisting of home-made food. Different genres of food knowledge in media texts (public information, entertainment, commercial marketing and consumers’ own use of new social media) frame ‘convenience’ food in different ways, contributing to its compound character and potential for being linked with sustainability.

Combining interviews, focus groups, participant observation and media reception analysis, WP4 will study families who subscribe to one of two food box-schemes: Ret Nemt (Fairly Easy)] and Årstiderne (The Seasons). WP4 will draw cross-national comparisons with the consumer knowledges and practices around sustainability and ‘convenience’ in the other work packages as well as comparing public campaigns and marketing materials from current health and environment-related food issues.