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Institutional consumers' views of GHG emission reduction by optional milk systems within sustainability frame

Mikkola, Minna and Risku-Norja, Helmi (2008) Institutional consumers' views of GHG emission reduction by optional milk systems within sustainability frame. Paper at: Empowerment of the rural actors: a renewal of the farming systems perspective : 8th European IFSA symposium, Clermont Ferrand, France, 6-10 July 2008.

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PDF - Published Version - English

Document available online at: http://ifsa.boku.ac.at/cms/fileadmin/Proceeding2008/2008_WS5_08_Mikkola.pdf


An on-going study examines how Green House Gas (GHG) emission information could be
used to support consumption driven changes in production, leading to reduction of GHG emissions in
agriculture. This paper presents a pre-study, looking for discursive grounds by which institutional
consumers make choices when confronted with the knowledge of GHG emission characteristics of five
optional milk systems. The milk systems to be compared in terms of agricultural GHG emissions were
(Option I) conventional milk system based on imported soy protein feed, (Option II) conventional milk
system using domestic protein source and (Option III) organic milk system, as well as vegetable milk
systems based on (Option IV) imported soy and (Option V) domestic oat. The discursive turn to these
optional milk systems was taken by five catering information professionals, who tried to respond to the
idea of catering for sustainability. The results revealed four different discourses, with variable ability to
make use of emission information when systemic change is to be approached in everyday productive
activities. Regarding emission information, the least sensitive discourse was the one of modernization,
emphasising the use of conventional, cheap products. Sustainability and ecological modernization
discourses exhibited most imaginative and novel solutions in productive activities. Bioregionalism
discourse joined other discourses connecting them with the idea of domestic production. The
discourses identified in this pre-study were, however, very fine-grained and intermingled, offering
rather lean support for novel choices. Additionally the market position of organic milk suffered due to
emission information, stressing heavily the reliability of environmental information as a ‘change agent’
on the market.

EPrint Type:Conference paper, poster, etc.
Type of presentation:Paper
Keywords:optional milk systems, GHG emissions, climate change, discursive grounds
Subjects: Crop husbandry
Environmental aspects
Research affiliation: Finland > Univ. Helsinki
Finland > Luke Natural Resources Institute
Deposited By: Koistinen, Riitta
ID Code:17572
Deposited On:16 Sep 2010 12:36
Last Modified:16 Sep 2010 12:36
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed

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