The sustainability promise of alternative food networks: an examination through ‘‘alternative’’ characteristics

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dc.contributor.author Forssell, Sini
dc.contributor.author Lankoski, Leena
dc.date.accessioned 2020-02-06T08:31:01Z
dc.date.available 2020-02-06T08:31:01Z
dc.date.issued 2015
dc.identifier.citation Forssell , S & Lankoski , L 2015 , ' The sustainability promise of alternative food networks: an examination through ‘‘alternative’’ characteristics ' , Agriculture and Human Values , vol. 32 , no. 1 , pp. 63-75 . https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-014-9516-4
dc.identifier.other PURE: 44362135
dc.identifier.other PURE UUID: d31c50d2-9e3e-449f-beee-5b9062c7a409
dc.identifier.other Scopus: 84939886937
dc.identifier.other WOS: 000347946900006
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10138/311159
dc.description.abstract Concerns about the unsustainability of the conventional food system have brought attention to so called alternative food networks (AFNs), which are widely thought to be more sustainable. However, claims made about AFNs’ sustainability have been subject to a range of criticisms. Some of them present counterevidence, while others have pointed to problematic underlying features in the academic literature and popular discourse that may hamper our understanding of AFNs’ sustainability. Considering these criticisms, together with the fact that the literature often addresses a specific type of AFN or a specific sustainability-related issue, it is hard to form a clear overall picture of the sustainability promise of AFNs. In this article, we seek to contribute to a clearer understanding of this promise through a structured review, focusing on links between AFN characteristics and sustainability. Through an analysis of AFN conceptualizations reflected in the literature, we identify and consolidate their key characteristics. We then synthesize claims of how these characteristics may translate into sustainability, finding a wide range of potential direct and indirect impacts. Examining these from different angles, we find that the sustainability promise of AFNs found in these claims is qualified by the presence of potentially unaddressed issues, by criticisms regarding for example the evidence base of the assumed impacts and their power in addressing sustainability, and by considerations of how these impacts might play out in actual, real-life food networks. Indirect impacts of learning and participation may be highly significant for sustainability. We conclude with recommendations for research and practice. en
dc.format.extent 13
dc.language.iso eng
dc.relation.ispartof Agriculture and Human Values
dc.rights unspecified
dc.rights.uri info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.subject 4111 Agronomy
dc.subject 416 Food Science
dc.subject 511 Economics
dc.title The sustainability promise of alternative food networks: an examination through ‘‘alternative’’ characteristics en
dc.type Article
dc.contributor.organization Department of Economics and Management
dc.description.reviewstatus Peer reviewed
dc.relation.doi https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-014-9516-4
dc.relation.issn 0889-048X
dc.rights.accesslevel openAccess
dc.type.version acceptedVersion

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