PlantPro – Accelerating an efficient green consumer transition 

PlantPro is unique in that it combines two relevant and topical issues: Plant-based and food waste. It couples researching plant-based products and plant-rich diets with the issue of food waste, in the form of food waste in households, and by exploring upcycled food that re-values side-streams otherwise wasted.  

The project takes a food system and societal transition approach, tackling consumer behaviour change within the societal context. We aim to explore ways to achieve societal tipping points that further the green transition in Denmark.  

The project is one of the few projects funded by Innovation Fund Denmark that have a focus on societal innovation and behaviour change. It is also unique in that it brings together such a large group of partners and collaborators. 

PlantPro will accelerate an efficient green consumer behaviour transition towards more plant-rich diets and reduced food waste. It aims to fill a knowledge gap on factors that drive consumer behaviour change towards more sustainable plant-rich diets and upcycled foods and greater acceptance of sustainable food technologies.  

The overall project aim is twofold:  

  • First, that a greater share of the broader population consumes more plant-rich diets in ways that at the same time reduce food waste in the system.  

  • Second, that the innovative Danish plant-based industry is strengthened, allowing Denmark to take a leading position internationally in a growth sector of great potential. 

Throughout the project, we will study industry trends, consumer perception and behaviour, test interventions and nudges, and develop new products and meals. We will develop and test consumer-targeted and scalable market and policy actions to nudge, inform and motivate population-wide shift towards a choice of more plant-rich diets, increased preference for upcycled foods, better acceptance of sustainable processing innovations, and avoidance of food waste.  

The project will deliver a catalogue of market and consumer insights and recommendations for policy and market actions including the expected effect on consumer behaviour change. The results will support decision-makers in the Danish industry and in the public sector in a) designing and launching new plant-based or upcycled products and services in particular in terms of product specifications as well as consumer communication; b) designing and implementing in-formational approaches as well as nudges changing the choice context in diverse settings across the market to facilitate the uptake of innovative products and greener diets by the broader population; and in connection to that c) designing and implementing consumer-driven strategies for food waste reduction. 

The project is a collaboration between the MAPP Centre at the Department of Management at Aarhus University, Department of Food Science at University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen Business School, Plantebranchen, Dansk Vegetarisk Forening, Thinktank OneThird, Simple Feast, Beyond Coffee, Circular Food Technology, Møllerup Brands, Food Innovation House, Orkla, Naturli, Planteslagterne, Upfield, Eachthing, Rema1000 and Fair Trees. 

The project is funded with DKK 8.4 mio  by Innovation Fund Denmark. The total funding is  DKK 13.1 mio. The project runs for three years, from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2024.  

The project is coordinated by Jessica Aschemann-Witzel, closely working together with Meike Janssen, CBS, and Armando Perez-CuetoDepartment of Food Science - UCPH, as well as the sector partners among the work package leaders who are represented by Plantebranchen, Frederik Madsen, Danish Vegetarian Society, Katrine Ejlerskov, Simple Feast, Christina Hjelm, and Beyond Coffee, Tobias Lau.