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Seminar on improving dietary quality for Chinese rural residents: Environmental and economic consequences from updated data and method

  • 04 September 2020  |  Seminars

On 4 September 2020, the fifth seminar of the United Nations Environment Programme -International Ecosystem Management Partnership (UNEP-IEMP) was held online. Dr. Sun Mingxing, a core member of UNEP-IEMP and an assistant researcher of the Institute of Geographic Sciences and resources of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, shared his recent research results based on the 2019 China rural development research database, " Improving dietary quality for Chinese rural residents: Environmental and economic consequences from updated data and method". More than 20 members attended the seminar.

Dr. Sun Mingxing first introduced the evaluation of rural food quality in China. The data showed that the food quality of rural residents in China in 2019 was greatly improved compared with that in 2011, but it was still at a low level, which was consistent with people's feelings in life. Secondly, Dr. Sun shared the impact of Chinese rural residents' diet on the environment. The data showed that a slight improvement in food quality would reduce the impact on the environment, but further improvement in food quality would increase the impact on the environment. Combined with the results of previous studies and the above data, Dr. Sun proposed possible effective measures to improve food quality and reduce its environmental impact. From the perspective of consumers, this paper calls on residents to increase the intake of fruits, vegetables, and dried fruits; from the perspective of producers, it calls on producers to produce green food and realize the green production process; from the perspective of consumers and producers, it calls for reducing food waste in all links of the food supply chain. From the perspective of managers, the implementation and improvement of targeted policy intervention measures are also conducive to the realization of the two goals of improving food quality and environmental protection. 

In the discussion session, we had a heated discussion on the differences between the data results and daily life experience and explored the possible reasons and explanations. For the data analysis, research results, and the further development of the full set of data, also reported their work progress and suggestions. The academic sharing meeting continued to provide opportunities for the members of the center to exchange work and explore new work ideas, realizing the original intention of the academic sharing meeting.

This research work is one of the contents of rural residents' livelihood research, which comes from the flagship project "climate, ecology and livelihood" (CEL) of UNEP-IEMP.

Dr. Mingxing Sun at the fifth seminar held by UNEP-IEMP