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ERIC Number: EJ1059475
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 55
ISSN: ISSN-1467-6370
Food-Related Environmental Beliefs and Behaviours among University Undergraduates: A Mixed-Methods Study
Campbell-Arvai, Victoria
International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, v16 n3 p279-295 2015
Purpose: The purpose of this paper was to document the food-related environmental beliefs and behaviours of undergraduate university students. More specifically, this research was focussed on determining if environmental sustainability is a consideration in students' food choices, identifying the specific choices and behaviours adopted to reduce their food-related environmental footprint, and documenting the role of gender and pro-environmental values in these food-related environmental beliefs and behaviours. Design/methodology/approach: This research employed a mixed methods approach, i.e. focus group discussions and a survey, to document the food-related environmental beliefs and behaviours of undergraduate university students. The survey was informed by the results of the focus group discussions, and included standard measures of pro-environmental values and worldview. Findings: Results from focus group discussions revealed a broad array of beliefs and behaviours related to the connection between food, food production and the environment. The survey confirmed these results, but indicated a preference for such actions as recycling and reducing food waste in contrast to such alternatives as reducing meat consumption or avoiding processed foods. These results suggest that educational campaigns could focus on strengthening beliefs about the food-environment connection, as well as help to empower students to take a greater variety of actions to reduce their food-related environmental footprint. Originality/value: Relatively little attention has been focussed on individual beliefs and practices with respect to achieving more sustainable food consumption, particularly on university and college campuses. The research also represents a departure from previous work in that it utilizes both qualitative and quantitative methods, and takes a broad approach to the food-environment connection.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A