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Sustainability 2016, 8(1), 69; doi:10.3390/su8010069

Transition towards Circular Economy in the Food System

Department of Environmental Sciences/Helsinki University Centre for Environment, University of Helsinki, Viikinkaari 2A, P.O. Box 65, Helsinki 00014, Finland
Department of Agricultural Sciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, Latokartanonkaari 5, Helsinki 00014, Finland
Forum for Environmental Information/Helsinki University Centre for Environment, University of Helsinki, Viikinkaari 2A, 2029, P.O. Box 65, Helsinki 00014, Finland
Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Mechelininkatu 34a, P.O. Box 140, Helsinki 00260, Finland
Research Division of Food and Health Sciences, University of Bayreuth, Universitätsstraße 30, Bayreuth 95440, Germany
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Helmut Haberl
Received: 9 October 2015 / Revised: 5 January 2016 / Accepted: 7 January 2016 / Published: 12 January 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Social Ecology and Sustainability)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [446 KB, uploaded 12 January 2016]   |  


Growing population and increased demand for food, inefficient resource use and food distribution, environmental impacts, and high rates of food wasted at all stages of the food system are all calling for transition towards more sustainable practices. In this article we apply the concept of circular economy to the case of a sustainable food system. Furthermore, we explore the transition towards a circular food system through the lens of socio-technical transition theory towards sustainability. We discuss challenges and potential solutions for the production stage (focusing on nutrient flow), the consumption stage (focusing on meat consumption), and food waste and surplus management and prevention. View Full-Text
Keywords: circular economy; sustainability; food system; socio-technical transition circular economy; sustainability; food system; socio-technical transition

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Jurgilevich, A.; Birge, T.; Kentala-Lehtonen, J.; Korhonen-Kurki, K.; Pietikäinen, J.; Saikku, L.; Schösler, H. Transition towards Circular Economy in the Food System. Sustainability 2016, 8, 69.

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