How Consumer Behavior in Daily Food Provisioning Affects Food Waste at Household Level in The Netherlands

Kim Janssens*, Wim Lambrechts, Annet van Osch, Janjaap Semeijn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

24 Citations (Web of Science)


Food production and consumption have remarkable negative environmental effects, in particular food waste. Food waste occurs throughout the entire food system, but households make the largest contribution. Reducing unnecessary waste of food represents a crucial step toward overcoming global issues of food waste, hunger, and climate change. Identifying barriers in reducing food waste is important not only to government and policymakers, but also to food producers, retailers, and marketers. Therefore, the objective of this research was to find out how consumer behavior in daily food provisioning affects food waste. An online survey was set up to question Dutch consumers (partly) in charge of the household's food management. A total of 211 consumers participated in answering questions on household composition, food management behavior (e.g., food purchase planning) and food waste awareness (i.e., concern about wasting food and intention not to waste food). Results show that purchase behavior in-store was the main driver of food waste. Specifically, participants indicated that buying more food than needed often had led to food waste. In addition, intention not to waste food acted as a moderator in the relationship between planning behavior and food waste. Age appears to have a diminishing impact on wasting food.
Original languageEnglish
Article number428
Number of pages19
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019


  • food waste
  • food waste behavior
  • consumer behavior
  • household food waste prevention
  • sustainable grocery management
  • grocery retail

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