Food waste is a problem with economic, environmental and social implications, making it both important and complex. Previous studies have addressed food waste management options at the less prioritised end of the waste hierarchy, but information on more prioritised levels is also needed when selecting the best available waste management options. Investigating the global warming potential and primary energy use of different waste management options offers a limited perspective, but is still important for validating impacts from the waste hierarchy in a local context. This study compared the effect on greenhouse gas emissions and primary energy use of different food waste management scenarios in the city of Växjö, Sweden. A life cycle assessment was performed for four waste management scenarios (incineration, anaerobic digestion, conversion and donation), using five food products (bananas, tomatoes, apples, oranges and sweet peppers) from the fresh fruit and vegetables department in two supermarkets as examples when treated as individual waste streams. For all five waste streams, the established waste hierarchy was a useful tool for prioritising the various options, since the re-use options (conversion and donation) reduced the greenhouse gas emissions and the primary energy use to a significantly higher degree than the energy recovery options (incineration and anaerobic digestion). The substitution of other products and services had a major impact on the results in all scenarios. Re-use scenarios where food was replaced therefore had much higher potential to reduce environmental impact than the energy recovery scenarios where fossil fuel was replaced. This is due to the high level of resources needed to produce food compared with production of fossil fuels, but also to fresh fruit and vegetables having a high water content, making them inefficient as energy carriers. Waste valorisation measures should therefore focus on directing each type of food to the waste management system that can substitute the most resource-demanding products or services, even when the whole waste flow cannot be treated with the same method.
The population of Greenland is diminishing and environmental and social shifts implicate food availability and the health of reproductive age women. There is little knowledge of the grocery store food environment in Greenland. To address this gap and provide baseline information the present study measured food availability in five grocery stores in northern Greenland. As well, 15 interviews were conducted with reproductive age women, three grocery store managers were interviewed and one interview was conducted with a food distribution manager. Results show few fresh fruits and vegetables are available in grocery stores and in some stores no fresh foods are available. In Kullorsuaq, the primary location for this study, the Nutrition Environment Measures Survey in Stores score in spring 2016 was (3/30) and the Freedman Grocery Store Survey Score was (11/49). Interview results highlight a need to increase communication within the food system and to tailor food distribution policies to the Arctic context with longer term planning protocols for food distribution. These findings can be used to inform future food store environment research in Greenland and for informing policies that improve healthful food availability in grocery stores in northern Greenland.
It is often found that adolescents eat too little fruit and vegetables. We examined the importance of school for 11-year-olds' daily intake measured by food frequency- and 24-h recall questionnaires in Danish data from the European 2003 Pro Children Survey. Multilevel logistic regression analyses included matched student-parent-school questionnaire data (N=1410) from a random sample of 59 schools and were conducted for fruit and vegetables separately: 1) without explanatory variables, to decompose the between-school and within-school variance; 2) with individual level covariates (socioeconomic position, parental intake, etc.) to examine if the between-school variance was attributable to different student compositions of schools; and 3) with individual- and school-level covariates (school availability of fruit/vegetables and unhealthy food) to examine the effect of context. Additional analyses stratified by gender and home availability of fruit/vegetables examined if school food availability influenced subgroups differently. Between-school variations were quantified by intra class correlations and median odds ratios. We found that 40% of the students ate > or = 200 g fruit/day and 25% ate > or = 130 g vegetables/day. Most of the total variance in students' intake occurred at the individual level (93-98%). There were larger between-school variations in vegetable intake than in fruit intake. Fruit and vegetable consumption clustered within schools to a larger degree for boys than girls. The between-school variance did not differ by home availability. Boys and students from high availability homes consumed more fruit and/or vegetables if enrolled in schools with access to fruit/vegetables and unhealthy food or contrarily with no food available versus schools with only fruit/vegetables available. The small school-level effects on 11-year-olds' fruit and vegetable intake imply that family level interventions may be more important and that the success of school interventions will rely on the degree of parental involvement.
No available dietary assessment method is without error in measuring dietary intake. This has led to an increased interest in biological markers of dietary intake. This article is a review of the literature investigating whether the concentration of carotenoids in blood can serve as biological markers for the intake of fruit and vegetables. The literature indicates an association between intake of fruit and vegetables and the concentration of total carotenoids, alfa-carotene, beta-carotene, lutein and beta-cryptoxanthin in plasma. The same association was not observed for plasma lycopene. Results from several studies also indicate that plasma alfa-carotene and plasma total carotenoids are more suitable as biological markers of the intake of fruit and vegetables than the other carotenoids. As there are large individual variations in the plasma carotenoid response after intake, carotenoids in blood will be a better marker of intake at group level than individual level. Furthermore, the average value from several measurements of carotenoids in blood will be a better marker of long-term intake than a single measurement. Several factors in addition to fruit and vegetables influence the concentration of carotenoids in blood. It is important to assess these factors when carotenoids in blood are used as biological markers of the intake of fruit and vegetables.
Nutritional information seldom reaches individuals with the most unhealthful dietary habits.
To explore whether an intervention focusing on a combination of nutritional information and increased availability of vegetables, fruits, and semi whole grain bread was effective to raise the intake, and knowledge, of these foods among recruits in the military with low as well as high baseline intake.
Intervention study, including 479 recruits, in intervention and control military camps. The participants were divided into three groups (low, medium, and high) according to their baseline intake of vegetables, fruits, and semi whole grain bread.
Those with low/medium baseline intake in the intervention camp had a significant increase in the intake of vegetables, fruits, and semi whole grain bread at follow-up. All three intake groups in the intervention camp also had significantly higher intake of these foods compared to those in the control camp at follow-up. The knowledge scores increased significantly among both high and low consumers in the intervention camp, but not in the control camp.
The intervention led to increased intake of vegetables, fruits, and semi whole grain bread among those recruits in the intervention camp, who were most in need to change their diet.