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It’s never too late to join the revolution! – Enabling new modes of production in the contemporary Danish food system

Martin Hvarregaard Thorsøe, Chris Kjeldsen and Egon Noe

European Planning Studies, 2017, vol. 25, issue 7, 1166-1183

Abstract: The Danish food system has undergone a transition in the past 10–20 years, in which new quality conventions have evolved. Examples include increasing organic production and consumption, and increasing interest in local food, experience, community, taste and gastronomy. This article explores what influences if and how these new food trends are expressed in the food system. We conduct a comparative case study involving three product categories: craft beer, specialty flour and organic broilers. Craft beer and specialty flour have undergone a revolution, in which new flavours, products, practices and social relations are generated; by contrast, organic broilers have remained a relatively stable product category. The case studies demonstrate that the revolution is not just taking place in one domain, but it implies a multidimensional reconfiguration of the food system where an emphasis on multiple quality aspects and diversification of the product category is important. However, food trends are not the invention of the individual producer, but serve as common conventions that products can be related to, although their interpretation is not pre-given. In addition, a transition presupposes a shared vision and a coordination of activities among the actors in the food system or the mobilization of new actors who share this vision.

Date: 2017
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