University of Twente Student Theses


Food packaging and circular economy in the Netherlands : challenges and policy solutions

Chaniotaki, Kalliopi Georgia (2020) Food packaging and circular economy in the Netherlands : challenges and policy solutions.

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Abstract:As highlighted by the Sustainable Development Goal 12 “Responsible consumption and production”, reducing food waste, and enhancing resource efficiency have become primary goals worldwide. Yet, the take-make-waste culture and the rapid growth of disposable food packaging are not satisfying the sustainability context. Packaging adds to the amount of total waste, but at the same time protects food from spoilage and enhances its shelf life, thus functions against food waste. The function of packaging is hindered by the waste and the subsequent pollution of its use. Circular Economy and its principles are highly promoted by the European Commission’s Green Deal and the Dutch national plan for Circular Economy as a holistic solution to reduce the environmental footprint of packaging. This thesis examines how circular economy can be integrated into food packaging practices. Moreover, it studies the challenges of such an integration focusing on the Dutch context of food packaging. It also analyses the relevant policy frameworks suggested by the European and Dutch policymakers that aim to overcome the identified challenges and enable and/or accelerate the Circular transition of the sector. The aforementioned research objectives are studied through desk research and semi-structured interviews with food packaging experts. The most predominant challenges in the Dutch context are categorized into informational, technological, behavioural, regulatory, and societal challenges. Next to this, relevant policy solutions provided by the European Commission and the Dutch government to address these challenges are illustrated. The results of these findings are further discussed and interpreted before conclusions are drawn. Lastly, recommendations regarding the inadequately addressed challenges are presented along with directions for future research.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:43 environmental science, 70 social sciences in general
Programme:Environmental and Energy Management MSc (69319)
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