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Publications (10 of 35) Show all publications
Wikström, F., Karli, V., Rafael, A., Olsson, A., Williams, H., Wever, R., . . . Risto, S. (2019). Packaging Strategies That Save Food: A Research Agenda for 2030. Journal of Industrial Ecology, 23(3), 532-540
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Packaging Strategies That Save Food: A Research Agenda for 2030
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2019 (English)In: Journal of Industrial Ecology, ISSN 1088-1980, E-ISSN 1530-9290, Vol. 23, no 3, p. 532-540Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Summary Thoroughly considering and optimizing packaging systems can avoid food loss and waste. We suggest a number of issues that must be explored and review the associated challenges. Five main issues were recognized through the extensive experience of the authors and engagement of multiple stakeholders. The issues promoted are classified as follows: (1) identify and obtain specific data of packaging functions that influence food waste; (2) understand the total environmental burden of product/package by considering the trade‐off between product protection and preservation and environmental footprint; (3) develop understanding of how these functions should be treated in environmental footprint evaluations; (4) improve packaging design processes to also consider reducing food waste; and (5) analyze stakeholder incentives to reduce food loss and waste. Packaging measures that save food will be important to fulfill the United Nations Sustainable Development goal to halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and to reduce food losses along production and supply chains.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley-Blackwell, 2019
Keywords
food loss, food waste, industrial ecology, package, packaging strategies, sustainability
National Category
Environmental Management Environmental Sciences Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-68020 (URN)10.1111/jiec.12769 (DOI)000469030300002 ()
Available from: 2018-06-25 Created: 2018-06-25 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved
Molina-Besch, K., Wikström, F. & Williams, H. (2019). The environmental impact of packaging in food supply chainsdoes life cycle assessment of food provide the full picture?. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 24(1), 37-50
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The environmental impact of packaging in food supply chainsdoes life cycle assessment of food provide the full picture?
2019 (English)In: The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, ISSN 0948-3349, E-ISSN 1614-7502, Vol. 24, no 1, p. 37-50Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

PurposeDue to the urgency and the magnitude of the environmental problems caused by food supply chains, it is important that the recommendations for packaging improvements given in life cycle assessment (LCA) studies of food rest on a balanced consideration of all relevant environmental impacts of packaging. The purpose of this article is to analyse the extent to which food LCAs include the indirect environmental impact of packaging in parallel to its direct impact. While the direct environmental impact of food packaging is the impact caused by packaging materials' production and end-of-life, its indirect environmental impact is caused by its influence on the food product's life cycle, e.g. by its influence on food waste and on logistical efficiency.MethodsThe article presents a review of 32 food LCAs published in peer-reviewed scientific journals over the last decade. The steps of the food product's life cycle that contribute to the direct and indirect environmental impacts of packaging provide the overall structure of the analytical framework used for the review. Three aspects in the selected food LCAs were analysed: (1) the defined scope of the LCAs, (2) the sensitivity and/or scenario analyses and (3) the conclusions and recommendations.Results and discussionWhile in packaging LCA literature, there is a trend towards a more systematic consideration of the indirect environmental impact of packaging, it is unclear how food LCAs handle this aspect. The results of the review show that the choices regarding scope and sensitivities/scenarios made in food LCAs and their conclusions about packaging focus on the direct environmental impact of packaging. While it is clear that not all food LCAs need to analyse packaging in detail, this article identifies opportunities to increase the validity of packaging-related conclusions in food LCAs and provides specific recommendations for packaging-related food LCA methodology.ConclusionsOverall, we conclude that the indirect environmental impact of packaging is insufficiently considered in current food LCA practice. Based on these results, this article calls for a more systematic consideration of the indirect environmental impact of packaging in future food LCAs. In addition, it identifies a need for more packaging research that can provide the empirical data that many food LCA practitioners currently lack. In particular, LCA practitioners would benefit if there were more knowledge and data available about the influence of certain packaging characteristics (e.g. shape, weight and type of material) on consumer behaviour.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2019
National Category
Food Engineering Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-71238 (URN)10.1007/s11367-018-1500-6 (DOI)000457748700005 ()
Available from: 2019-02-21 Created: 2019-02-21 Last updated: 2019-02-22Bibliographically approved
Williams, H., Wikström, F., Lindström, A., Wickholm, K. & Lorentzon, A. (2017). Investigation of consumer attitudes, practices and food waste for three food items, to use as input in new packaging designs that aim to reduce food waste. In: 28th IAPRI World Symposium on Packaging: . Paper presented at 28th IAPRI World Symposium on Packaging (pp. 1-7).
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Investigation of consumer attitudes, practices and food waste for three food items, to use as input in new packaging designs that aim to reduce food waste
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2017 (English)In: 28th IAPRI World Symposium on Packaging, 2017, p. 1-7Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

A wide range of measures is required to tackle the global food waste problem. Innovative packaging, which helps to reduce food waste, is one important measure. The data for food waste is often presented in a summarised way. However, different food products are wasted for different reasons. In a Swedish project, actors along the entire value chain collaborated to develop new packaging solutions to reduce food waste of three products: salsa in glass jars, mixed lettuce in plastic packaging and rice pudding in plastic packaging. Waste levels and reasons for waste were examined in waste audits of the businesses, in ethnographic studies and in interviews with consumers at retail stores.

This study showed that consumers wasted the products to a much higher extent than the waste which occurred during filling, transport and retail. Waste levels among consumers varied from 0-75%, which is notably high, given that consumers tend to underestimate or not admit to wasting food. The mixed lettuce and rice pudding are both intended to be packaged in appropriate serving sizes; however, only 27% of the mixed lettuce and 50% of the rice pudding was consumed in one sitting. Respondents mentioned some material features and several handling functions of packaging, but very few commented on the protection that the packaging provides. Few, if any, expressed any recognition of packaging attributes, which helped to avoid food waste.

The respondents mentioned that wasting food was a waste of money and that it can have a negative effect on conscience; despite that, respondents also said that they wanted a variety of meals and to not have the same food several days during the same week.

Keywords
packaging, packaging attributes, food waste, sustainable development, behaviour
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65121 (URN)
Conference
28th IAPRI World Symposium on Packaging
Funder
Vinnova
Available from: 2017-11-06 Created: 2017-11-06 Last updated: 2019-06-11Bibliographically approved
Wikström, F. & Williams, H. (2017). Packaging and Food Waste Behavior. In: Reference Module in Food Sciences: (pp. 1-4). Elsevier
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Packaging and Food Waste Behavior
2017 (English)In: Reference Module in Food Sciences, Elsevier, 2017, p. 1-4Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Packaging saves food by protecting the content from physical and chemical degradation during the distribution and storage processes. However, packaging can do much more than that. This article explores how the design of a package may help, or indeed hinder, the consumer to avoid wasting food. A number of packaging attributes influence consumer behavior. The influence is different depending on the product‘s characteristics and the needs of the consumer. For many products, it might be better to add packaging material, for example, by creating smaller sizes of the product to reduce food waste and the overall environmental impact.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2017
Keywords
Packaging, Food waste, Packaging attributes, Sustainable packaging, Behavior, Life cycle assessment, Environmental impact, Recycling, Consumer, Primary packaging
National Category
Materials Engineering Environmental Biotechnology Environmental Engineering
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-67456 (URN)10.1016/B978-0-08-100596-5.21412-1 (DOI)978-0-08-100596-5 (ISBN)
Available from: 2018-06-04 Created: 2018-06-04 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Lindh, H., Williams, H., Olsson, A. & Wikstrom, F. (2016). Elucidating the Indirect Contributions of Packaging to Sustainable Development: A Terminology of Packaging Functions and Features. Packaging technology & science, 29(4-5), 225-246
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Elucidating the Indirect Contributions of Packaging to Sustainable Development: A Terminology of Packaging Functions and Features
2016 (English)In: Packaging technology & science, ISSN 0894-3214, E-ISSN 1099-1522, Vol. 29, no 4-5, p. 225-246Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Packaging has great potential to contribute to sustainable development through its functions. Previous research has indicated a need for increased knowledge among consumers, suppliers, authorities and media of how packaging functions and features influence sustainable development. Previous research also shows the need for a common terminology of packaging functions and features in order to facilitate and improve communication and understanding in development and decision processes. This conceptual paper sets out to identify, collect, analyse and systemize packaging functions and features and evaluate them based on their indirect contributions to sustainable development. The systemized functions and features are expressed in generic terminology. Three clusters of packaging functions were identified from the literature: protect, facilitate handling and communicate. Nineteen packaging features were also identified. They were grouped under the three functions and elaborated based on their indirect contributions to the environmental, social and economic dimensions of sustainable development. Fourteen potential positive indirect effects were identified including decreased product waste, reduced risk for human health hazards, increased handling and transport efficiency. Decreased product waste was generated by 13 of the features and was thus the most frequently appearing. Reducing waste is thereby indicated to be a manifold matter, but also one of great potential. The proposed terminology can contribute to an increased understanding of how packaging can actually contribute to sustainable development. In a theoretical context, this paper attempts to complement earlier work in sustainable packaging development by its emphasis on the indirect contributions of packaging to sustainable development.

Keywords
sustainable packaging development, packaging functions, packaging features, indirect effects of packaging, literature review
National Category
Environmental Engineering
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-42615 (URN)10.1002/pts.2197 (DOI)000375104800002 ()
Available from: 2016-06-03 Created: 2016-06-03 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
Wickholm, K., Williams, H., Lindström, A., Lorentzon, A. & Wikström, F. (2016). Innovative packaging for reduction of food waste from producer to consumer. In: : . Paper presented at IAPRI 20th World conference on packaging : innovation, development and sustainability in packaging, Campinas/San Paolo, Brazil, June 12-15, 2016.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Innovative packaging for reduction of food waste from producer to consumer
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2016 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Increasing population and environmental changes poses a significant pressure on the global food supply chain. With the large quantities of food waste that’s been reported over the past couple of years packaging can play a more significant role in reducing the food wastage. Together with actors along the entire value chain we are developing new innovative packaging solutions to reduce food waste throughout the value chain, from food producers to consumers. The purpose of the study is to design and optimize new packaging system solutions so that no part of the chain is optimized at the expense of any other part. In the fall of 2015 the food wastage was examined in three supply chains, salsa in glass jar (A), rice pudding in plastic packaging (B) and lettuce in plastic packaging (C), by using waste audits in the businesses, collecting, comparing and analyzing data. For consumer insights ethnographic studies was used in ten Swedish households. Interviews have also been conducted with consumers in retail stores. The supply chain study indicates little wastage for A and B and higher for C. Consumer report some handling difficulties with the food packaging and reasons why food is wasted. The main reasons being that the food gets bad, difficulties to empty the packaging and that the amount of food is higher than their needs. A majority of the consumer state that they often view packaging as something unnecessary. Consumers do not give packaging functions many thoughts in general and many have difficulties in judging the packaging functions.

Keywords
food packaging, waste, sustainable development, consumer, supply
National Category
Paper, Pulp and Fiber Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-64787 (URN)
Conference
IAPRI 20th World conference on packaging : innovation, development and sustainability in packaging, Campinas/San Paolo, Brazil, June 12-15, 2016
Note

Slides only

Available from: 2017-04-06 Created: 2017-10-26 Last updated: 2018-06-25Bibliographically approved
Wikström, F., Williams, H. & Govindarajan, V. (2016). The influence of packaging attributes on recycling and food waste behaviour – An environmental comparison of two packaging alternatives. Journal of Cleaner Production, 137, 895-902
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The influence of packaging attributes on recycling and food waste behaviour – An environmental comparison of two packaging alternatives
2016 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 137, p. 895-902Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper analyses how user behaviour influences the environmental comparison of two different packages for minced meat - a lightweight tube and a tray. The direct and indirect environmental effects are evaluated using simplified LCA. A number of packaging attributes with regard to food waste and recycling behaviour are analysed for the packages, and then used for the scenario calculations. The results show that the tube is the superior environmental alternative when only the direct effects are considered. When indirect effects and user behaviour are included in the comparison, the tray is the better alternative due to higher recycling rates and, most importantly, less food waste during the process of emptying. However, the environmental impacts due to the food waste in the tube may be compensated for, if the longer shelf-life of the tube results in lower wastage in the households. It is concluded that indirect environmental effects and user behaviour should be included in environmental assessments of packaging to obtain meaningful results.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2016
Keywords
Packaging LCA, Food waste, Indirect environmental effects, User behaviour
National Category
Environmental Management
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-45575 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2016.07.097 (DOI)000391079300080 ()
Available from: 2016-08-31 Created: 2016-08-31 Last updated: 2019-06-17Bibliographically approved
Williams, H., Verghese, K., Lockrey, S., Crossin, E., Clune, S., Rio, M. & Wikström, F. (2014). The greenhouse gas profile of a “Hungry Planet”; quantifying the impacts of the weekly food purchases including associated packaging and food waste of three families. In: : . Paper presented at 19th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging from 15 to 18 June 2014 in Melbourne, Australia..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The greenhouse gas profile of a “Hungry Planet”; quantifying the impacts of the weekly food purchases including associated packaging and food waste of three families
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2014 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) have estimated that 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted across the supply chain, while food security emerges as one of the leading challenges facing a growing global population. Life cycle assessment (LCA) can illustrate the environmental implications of food production, consumption and waste. In 2005, Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio presented a photographic study in “Hungry Planet – What the World Eats” documenting what thirty families across twenty-four countries ate during the course of one week. The weekly food purchasing inventories of three of these families have been combined with LCA data to report the greenhouse gas intensity of these food purchases. The greenhouse gas emission profile including those of 128 varieties of fresh food, along with data on packaging material production and household food waste, have been used in the calculations. The paper will present the findings illustrating the contribution each component has: food, packaging and food waste; and will also discuss the implications for food packaging design. 

Keywords
food packaging design, food purchases, greenhouse gas, life cycle assessment, LCA, packaging
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-33986 (URN)
Conference
19th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging from 15 to 18 June 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.
Note

Fullstädningt program finns på hemsida. http://www.vu.edu.au/19th-iapri-world-conference-on-packaging. 

Karli Verghese gjorde muntlig presetnation

Available from: 2014-10-03 Created: 2014-10-03 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
Wikström, F., Williams, H., Verghese, K. & Clune, S. (2014). The influence of packaging attributes on consumer behaviour in food-packaging life cycle assessment studies - a neglected topic. Journal of Cleaner Production, 73, 100-108
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The influence of packaging attributes on consumer behaviour in food-packaging life cycle assessment studies - a neglected topic
2014 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 73, p. 100-108Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The role of packaging systems to reduce food waste is rarely modelled in life cycle assessment (LCA) studies. This means that a packaging system format with a lower environmental impact that causes high food waste, may appear to be a better alternative than a packaging system with a higher environmental impact that reduces food waste. This can be contradictory to the purpose of using LCA to reduce overall environmental impacts, because food generally has a higher environmental impact than the packaging system. This paper highlights packaging attributes that may influence food waste, and demonstrates via six packaging scenarios how the environmental impact for the functional unit of “eaten food” can be calculated when food waste is included. The results show that the function of “avoiding food waste” is a critical packaging issue. The connection between packaging design and food waste should be acknowledged and valued by relevant stakeholders such as: food producers, manufacturers, brand owners, retailers and consumers, and also in packaging regulations. To fully explore the potential for packaging systems to reduce their overall environmental impact, food waste should be included. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2014
Keywords
Packaging attributes, Consumer behaviour, Food waste, LCA
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Environmental and Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-33819 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2013.10.042 (DOI)000337852000012 ()
Available from: 2014-09-25 Created: 2014-09-24 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
Williams, H., Wikström, F., Otterbring, T., Löfgren, M. & Gustafsson, A. (2012). Reasons for household food waste with special attention to packaging. Journal of Cleaner Production, 24, 141-148
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Reasons for household food waste with special attention to packaging
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2012 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 24, p. 141-148Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The amount of food waste needs to be reduced in order to sustain the world's limited resources and secure enough food to all humans. Packaging plays an important role in reducing food waste. The knowledge about how packaging affects food waste in households, however, is scarce. This exploratory study examines reasons for food waste in household and especially how and to what extent packaging influences the amount of food waste. Sixty-one families measured their amount of food waste during seven days and noted in a diary why each item was wasted. Thirty of the families had participated earlier in an environmental project including education in environmental issues of everyday life. About 20-25% of the households' food waste could be related to packaging. Three packaging aspects dominate the packaging related waste: packages that the consumer noted as being too big and packages that were difficult to empty, and wastage because of passed "best before date". The environmentally educated households wasted less, especially of prepared food. They also wasted less food due to passed "best before date". These households were more observant to packaging aspects in relation to food waste. The observations made could be used to learn more about packaging attributes that affect food waste. Although they recognised packaging influence on food waste, these households expressed lower satisfaction with packaging functions and wanted packaging to a lower extent. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2012
Keywords
Packaging functions, Packaging development, Food waste, Environmental education, Purchase habits, Sustainable development
National Category
Psychology Environmental Engineering
Research subject
Psychology; Energy Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-38520 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2011.11.044 (DOI)000300476800016 ()
Available from: 2016-01-22 Created: 2015-11-23 Last updated: 2018-05-25Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-8669-6656

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