The Design Methods in Food research group is the driving force behind the ZERO Food Waste Challenge. In 2021 there was a Brabant edition, in 2022 nationwide. Partners are Aeres, Inholland, Fontys, Food Valley Circular, Foundation Jong Leren Eten, Foundation Samen Tegen Voedselverspilling and Rabobank.
Design Methods in Food research group
The Food Design Methods research group conducts research into design methods that can be used in further education, and which result in new designs for healthy and sustainable food choice behaviour. These are things like food products, packaging and communications, but also entirely new food environments and food systems.
About the research group
The Design Methods in Food research group conducts research into a variety of methods to investigate and support healthy and sustainable food choice behaviour in the food environment. This includes systemic analysis and design methods.
In the first phase of the research group (2018-2022), we found that design methods were effective. This was thanks to the emphasis on people's needs and the iterative nature of the design phase, which meant that an appropriate and usable food concept or design was ultimately produced. In addition, design methods work well if they provide inspiration, are clear and if they are easy for the user to apply.
As food designers, one of the aspects of temptation we have far less control over is human behaviour. Temptation and specific support for healthy and sustainable food choices are increasing in social importance. For the second phase (2022-2026), we will conduct research into methods for investigating and supporting healthy and sustainable food choice behaviour in a food environment. Systemic analysis and design methods will also be used to this end.
Lines of research
The research topics included in this research group are:
- research into existing behavioural analysis and design methods, and best practices in behavioural research and successful interventions
- applied case studies of healthy and sustainable food (‘good food’) and food environments, with a focus on attracting and supporting healthy and sustainable food choice behaviour
- setting up a 'conshuman behaviour lab' in which consumers, students, the business community and researchers work together on our research into good food.
The research group focuses on providing an Innovation Toolbox which contains the most important methods (or tools) to design and develop an innovative concept. To provide an overview, the tools in the toolbox are arranged according to the various tool types. We have deliberately avoided linking to any model or roadmap (such as Design Thinking, the Food innovation model or Innovation Tunnel), to offer more choice and freedom for students and lecturers.
For healthy and sustainable food, it is important to create a level playing field when competing with products that are tempting in their very nature (such as creamy, fatty, crunchy and/or sweet products, but also cheap carbohydrate-rich products that fill you up).
A Seduction Toolbox sets out the most important methods and aspects with which a food concept can be designed, developed and marketed in the most attractive way possible. Regardless of how healthy or sustainable a food concept is, if it is not enticing enough, it will not be popular, and the innovation will become one of the 9 out of 10 that are unsuccessful.
Sustainable Development Goals
Related research groups
A healthy food environment and making healthy food choices is at the heart of the Food & Health research group of HAS green academy. The research group focuses on 2 issues: the composition of the product and what you can say about it in your communication & marketing.
The Green Health research group has as objective knowledge development and knowledge dissemination on increasing fruit and vegetable consumption, the health of Dutch consumers and the sustainability of Dutch society.
The Food Production in a Circular Economy research group wants to facilitate businesses in the agri-food sector in producing with minimum impact on the environment while making the most efficient use of natural resources. This is mainly done by closing loops and making production processes more sustainable.