A new European research project will enable consumers to find and buy local food supplies, reducing waste and supporting sustainable purchases.
The FoodMAPP project – being led in the UK by Bournemouth University (BU) – will develop a searchable map-based platform that will enable consumers to search and buy food products directly from local suppliers.
Currently within Europe food is transported, on average, 171km from farm to fork. 26 per cent of global carbon emissions come from food and large volumes of food are wasted.
The FoodMAPP project aims to address these challenges by enabling consumers to identify and purchase local sources of food in real time to shorten supply chains and reduce food waste, while also providing additional sustainable income to food producers and providers.
A consortium of European partners, comprising academic partners in Croatia, Hungary, Spain and Belgium and industry partners in France & Austria will support the project.
BU’s involvement in FoodMAPP will be led by Associate Professor Jeff Bray and supported by an interdisciplinary research team from across the university including Professor Katherine Appleton, Professor Juliet Memery, Dr Roberta Discetti and Dr Vegard Engen.
Dr Bray said: “Our current food supply system is not sustainable both in terms of its ability to reliably provide the right nutrition for a growing world population and in terms of the environmental footprint of current practices.”
“The project aims to transform local food supply reducing food miles, reducing food waste and increasing localised food supply resilience.”
BU led on the development of the four-year project, which has been awarded €584,200 from Horizon Europe Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, alongside additional funding from UKRI to support BU’s continued inclusion.
The European coordinator is Associate Professor Vinko Lešić from Zagreb University (Croatia) and partners include Ghent University (Belgium), Eötvös Loránd University (Hungary) and CREDA (Centre for agro-food economics and development, Spain) alongside partners from the food industry – Institute Paul Bocuse (France) and Ronge & Partner (Austria).