Most important commitments for French people in the context of food use 2019

When considering their food consumption, 54 percent of French people identify avoiding waste and choosing seasonal products as their top priorities. A third significant commitment is the purchase of local products, put forward by 43 percent of respondents. Concerns about packaging, animal conditions, pesticides, and fair living wages for producers are also on the minds of French users.

Sustainability: a growing concern

Looking at these answers, it would seem sustainability is at the core of customers’ priorities. Indeed, their answers resonate with the definition that the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) gives of sustainable food systems: namely, these should be profitable economically, benefit society, and have a neutral impact on the environment.
Initiatives, like the Earth Overshoot Day, that regularly bring up the topic of the world population’s consumption habits and the fact they are not viable may be behind these shifting priorities. But while people of all ages are expressing their willingness to change their eating habits to better care for the environment, how can this be implemented in real life?

Intentions VS actions

The reality is slightly more nuanced. While there has been an actual change in behaviors, there is still room for improvement.
It is a fact that people did change the way they eat: compared to a few years ago, their purchase of local products has increased, whereas their meat consumption has decreased. However, households still believe they waste less food than they actually do. And on another hand, almost 50 percent of the population is not ready to stop using their individual vehicles in favor of public transport or carpooling for example.

Still, environmentalism is not a battle to be fought by everyday people alone. Consumers are demanding more and more accountability from corporations, a strategy that appears to be working.

In regard to food consumption, what do you see as a priority?*

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Source

Release date

January 2020

Region

France

Survey time period

November 15-27, 2019

Number of respondents

2,000 respondents

Age group

18 years and older

Method of interview

Computer-assisted personal interviews (CAPI)

Supplementary notes

* This question was phrased by the source as follows: "As part of your food consumption (and that of your household), what are the 3 commitments that you feel are the most important today?"

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