Generation Z Food Waste, Diet and Consumption Habits: A Finnish Social Design Study with Future Consumers

Tiina Kymäläinen, Anu Seisto, Roosa Malila (Corresponding Author)

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    43 Citations (Scopus)
    132 Downloads (Pure)


    This article presents a Finnish social design study that was targeted at future Generation Z consumers. The main objective was to gain understanding of the target group’s attitudes, routines and skills relating to food consumption, diets and food waste within their households. The sustainability framework studied the Generation Z experience, obstacles and opportunities relating to behavior patterns, in addition with current habits—with respect to planning, shopping, cooking, eating and storing—and future motivations. The aim of the social design investigations was to provide contributions to the design outcome: a behavior change application that steered young consumers’ behavior patterns towards a more sustainable direction. The design framework was applied in two case studies that focused on 17–26-year-old consumers in Finland. The main method was qualitative online focus group discussions. Based on the results, the most important behavior change opportunities related to social aspects, the role of company sponsoring, localization and context-awareness potential in young consumers’ close environment and the need to engage wider sustainability aspects—such as carbon footprint, comparison of diets and financial savings—to the behavior change framework. Based on the results, the participants took the climate change challenge associated with food waste and biased diets very seriously.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number2124
    Pages (from-to)1-14
    Number of pages14
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Feb 2021
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • food waste
    • waste prevention
    • food waste behavior and habits
    • future consumer
    • generation Z
    • Social design
    • design interventions
    • focus group discussions
    • sustainability


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