A model for adding actionable sustainability information to Greek food databases
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Nutrition Information Systems Laboratory, Department of Nutritional Sciences and Dietetics, School of Health Sciences, International Hellenic University, Thessaloniki, Greece
Publication date: 2022-05-27
Public Health Toxicol 2022;2(Supplement Supplement 1):A158
Sustainable and healthy diets are important for overall planetary and human health, as the two are becoming more and more interconnected. Modern Nutrition Information systems must take sustainability into account, making it easily available as a component for decision making and using it to provide better automated recommendations for personalised nutrition. Meanwhile, population awareness and perceptions on sustainability, as well as consecutive food choice behaviors are unclear, especially in Greece, a country that can leverage on the Mediterranean diet principles and its natural climate and resources, respectively, to easily promote a more sustainable diet. In this context, the demand for clear, actionable information on the sustainability of food choices is higher than ever.
Following a thorough literature review of the dimensions and variables of sustainability in food systems, such as seasonality and environmental footprint, we present the initial design principles and the respective workflows for creating and maintaining a “Greek Food Sustainability Index”, using a digital assessment model to provide actionable sustainability information for food and food products in Greece. This multi-layered model extends existing food databases with new properties and defines the ways to collect, assess and continuously update data through a “digital observatory”, using tools such as automated food availability and price scrapers and online consumer questionnaires. The model binds existing and new information using a built-for-purpose common semantic web ontology.
Creating such a model that will inform stakeholders on the sustainability of food choices in Greece, will improve our understanding of the involved factors and contribute to the growing demand for sustainable and healthy diets on a national level.
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