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Classification framework

The collected policies are classified according to policy goals, targets (primary target and ultimate beneficiary), and instruments.


As for the policy classification by goal, two options are provided:

The first is based on the SUSFANS conceptual framework, which summarised EU policy goals into four overarching ones, namely (i) Balanced and sufficient diets for EU citizens, (ii) Reduced environmental impacts on the food system, (iii) Viable and socially balanced EU agri-food business, and (iv) Contribution to global food and nutrition security. The five policy goals used here to classify the mapped food policies represent an adaptation of the SUSFANS goals, to reflect the desired outcomes expressed in EU or national policies. More specifically, the chosen food policy goals are:

  • Balanced and sufficient diets for all EU citizens
  • Food safety
  • Reduced environmental impact
  • Viable and socially balanced EU agri-food business
  • Equitable outcomes and conditions

The second classification reflects the four FOOD 2030 overarching priorities, namely:

  • NUTRITION for sustainably and healthy diets, whose main challenges are: (i) Tackling malnutrition and obesity; (ii) Improving nutrition for healthy ageing, (iii) Supporting protein alternatives to meat; (iv) Ensuring food authenticity and developing future safety systems; (v) Recovering forgotten crops for nutrition and resilience; (vi)Promoting healthy and sustainable African diets.
  • CLIMATE smart and environmentally sustainable food systems, whose main challenges are: (i) Demonstrate sustainable aquaculture for Europe, (ii) Enabling precision farming for small farmers, (iii) Boosting photosynthesis for food and energy; (iv) Fighting climate change through healthy soils.
  • CIRCULARITY and resource efficiency of food systems, whose main challenges are: (i) Achieving zero food waste; (ii) Tackling primary production waste streams; (iii) Converting food waste into bio-based products; (iv) Rethinking food packaging and labelling; (v) Sharing data for short-circuit food systems.
  • INNOVATION and empowerment of communities, whose main challenges are: (i) Ensuring sustainable and accessible food in cities; (ii) Engaging citizens in food systems and science policy; (iii) Fostering a sharing economy for food production and consumption; (iv) Implementing data-driven food and nutrition systems.


The above classification and definitions were not exhaustive in terms of covering the mapped policies included in the dataset. For example, income and price support measures for the agricultural sector that are independent from nutrition and environmental outcomes (e.g. some of past CAP measures like milk quotas) are not covered in the priority list and were marked as N.A. (not applicable). Other specific measures, e.g. those aimed at promoting animal welfare, were included in the CLIMATE priority, but no specific challenge has been selected. Similarly, aid and cooperation policies for agriculture in developing countries that do not fall under the “diets in Africa” challenge were left unclassified.


The mapped policies refer to the entire food system: from inputs, primary production, harvesting, storage, processing, packaging and distribution, to consumers. The mapping has considered not only policies targeting actors (i.e. policy target groups) involved in the food system, but also those targeting actors who, even if not directly involved in the food system, can influence food availability and consumption or other related matters (e.g. the logistic sector, import/export companies, the education sector, research institutions, the health sector, media and public authorities). Furthermore, the possibility of public-private partnerships as policy targets has been envisaged.


The following policy instruments were considered in the food policy classification:

  • R&I instruments, broken down into three dimensions (Rogge and Reichardt, 2016):

-          Economic instruments (e.g. fiscal measures, research funding, etc.)

-          Regulation (e.g. regulation on intellectual property rights and patenting, technology standards, banning practices, etc.)

-          Information (e.g. funding trainings/education measures, scientific workshops, etc.)

  • Regulation and self-regulation
  • Fiscal policies (e.g. taxes, price subsidies, etc.)
  • Income support measures (farmer income support, low-income consumer support, etc.)
  • Border measures (tariffs, export subsidies, etc.)
  • Food and agricultural standards, either voluntary or mandatory (e.g. pesticide limits, sodium/saturated fats/added sugars content, IGP-DOP, etc.)
  • Labelling measures
  • Regulation (e.g. legal requirements)
  • Information measures (social marketing, advertising rules, campaigns etc.)
  • Education measures
  • Delivery of services
  • Procurement
  • SME-targeted support


Food Policy Database

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