CSIRO Agriculture and Food, Melbourne Australia
Dr Ridoutt is a Principal Research Scientist with Australia’s national science agency – The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). His expertise is in life cycle sustainability assessment in the agriculture and food sectors which is used to address strategic challenges in relation to climate change, water scarcity, sustainable food systems, and sustainable diets. Dr Ridoutt is engaged in a range of international processes relating to the standardization of sustainability assessment and environmental labelling. His research is creating the main evidence base concerning the environmental impacts of dietary habits in Australia.
Dietary change has been suggested as a way of reducing food-related environmental impacts. But how low is low enough? The pursuit of unnecessarily aggressive reductions in dietary environmental footprint could limit flexibility, dietary diversity, and even nutritional adequacy. The Planetary Boundary framework can help address this issue, by describing limits of acceptable resource use and emissions. This framework can also help to navigate the minefield of sustainable diet studies and claims. Food systems vary in different regions, as do local public health nutrition challenges, and the importance of specific foods in relation to under-consumed nutrients. It is unrealistic to generalize globally. This presentation will summarise results obtained applying the Planetary Boundary concept to Australian dietary patterns.