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NAHGAST II

The NAHGAST research project on sustainable gastronomy continues

They are among the most popular dishes in the gastronomy: chicken schnitzel and bratwurst. How would the guests react if the canteen reduced the meat portion from 140 to 120 grams? Would this have any significant impact on the environment at all? The Studierendenwerk Münster has tested this as a practical partner in a research project. The guests would also have rated the smaller portions as sufficient. In the future, just two standard dishes with chicken schnitzel and bratwurst in just one canteen, the Mensa am Ring, could save 3.6 tons of CO2 equivalents per year, writes the Studierendenwerk in the book "Nachhaltig außer Haus essen".

Prof. Dr. Petra Teitscheid of Münster University of Applied Sciences published it with colleagues at the end of the first round of the NAHGAST research project (Sustainable Production and Consumption in Out-of-Home Catering). The project has now entered the second round. NAHGAST II also involves the Studierendenwerk as a practical partner, as well as the cafeteria association of the Euregio-Gesamtschule Rheine. In total, the number of participating gastronomy businesses from different segments has increased from six to more than 20.

"We would like to work with you at eye level", said Silke Friedrich from Münster University of Applied Sciences at a kick-off meeting for the practice partners from the region. The scientist from the Institute for Sustainable Nutrition (iSuN) is coordinating the joint project, Prof. Dr. Petra Teitscheid is leading it. Research partners are the Technical University (TU) Berlin and the Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy. "All global sustainability goals are directly or indirectly linked to the food system. Gastronomy is playing an increasingly important role in this context, because we now eat about every second meal outside our own four walls," says Teitscheid. What is put on the table in canteens and restaurants has a significant impact on the environment, health and fairness to humans and animals.

Four work packages are now on the agenda at NAHGAST II. Topics are the evaluation of the NAHGAST calculator, communication with customers, information on food waste and the evaluation of the transfer into practice.

With the calculator, the NAHGAST team has developed an online tool with which catering establishments can have the sustainability of individual dishes assessed: How compatible is the dish with the environment and health, how fair is it to humans and animals? The calculator is available free of charge at www.nahgast.de/rechner.

The TU Berlin team, led by Prof. Dr. Nina Langen, will test the effectiveness of nudges in real-life laboratories to select sustainable dishes and reduce plate waste. The extensive experience gained from NAHGAST will be used for this purpose.

NAHGAST II is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the program "Sustainable Management" within the scope of "Social-ecological Research". The project ends in November 2020.

Nudging for more organic (ingredients) on the plate

Nina Langen in an interview on the NAHGAST project and nudging in an article on Oekolandbau.de.

Link to the article (in German)

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