EIT-Food – COVID-19 Study: European Food Behaviours (ENG)

The problems that are a consequence of COVID19 are felt all over the world and concern not only health issues. The economic effects of the pandemic and the related restrictions are particularly negative for tourism and catering sectors. The huge drop in income in these areas of the economy also affects other industries, contributing to the worsening of the economic situation in many countries and deepening the global crisis.

The pandemic is also a difficult time for society, in the health, material and psychological sense. People are worried about their own and their loved ones’ health, their finances and future. Many people have had to change their current style and lifestyle, trying to adapt to the current limitations, a different system of their own professional work and online education of children.

The changes in daily life and concerns caused by COVID19 also affect changes in food consumption – where and how consumers shop, what they pay attention to when choosing food products, and their food preparation and eating habits. Some of these changes are short-lived and will weaken with the end of the pandemic, others may persist long after the pandemic ends. For food companies, these long-term changes in consumer behaviour will be of great importance – they need to understand and adapt to them in order to survive in the marketplace.

Objective and activities undertaken within the project

The aim of the project is to develop possible scenarios for long-term changes in consumer behavior related to food consumption under the influence of COVID19. Scenarios will then be presented to food sector stakeholders in Europe – producers, retailers, large and small catering owners. The knowledge gained will help them adapt their future activities to the needs and habits of consumers.

In order to develop scenarios, the following was carried out:

  • quantitative research with the participation of 5000 consumers from 10 European countries (Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom).
  • qualitative research with consumers from 5 European countries (Finland, Spain, Germany, Poland, United Kingdom)
  • workshops with representatives of companies from the food sector in 5 European countries (Finland, Spain, Germany, Poland, United Kingdom).




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The funds: Horizon 2020 The EIT food

Project duration: June – December 2020

At the University of Warsaw the project is carried out under the leadership of Prof. Dominika Maison.  The team from the University of Warsaw is responsible for the research carried out in Poland and the organization and analysis of qualitative research results with consumers.

Partners: CSIC, KU Leuven, Queen’s University Belfast, University of Aarhus, University of Helsinki, University of Warsaw, Valio, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland,

Team coordinator and contact person: Katarzyna Stasiuk, katarzyna.stasiuk@psych.uw.edu.pl

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