Nordic Food Transitions : Towards a territorialized action space for food and rural development book cover
1st Edition

Nordic Food Transitions
Towards a territorialized action space for food and rural development

ISBN 9780367589806
Published August 14, 2020 by Routledge
130 Pages

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Book Description

The ambition of the book is to investigate a possible transition in the markets for food in the Nordic countries. Six chapters from various disciplinary traditions study change and innovation within the food sectors in Denmark, Sweden and Norway; while an introductory chapter discusses the findings of these analyses. Specialty food has established a strong position within product categories such as craft beer in Denmark and organic food in Sweden, but has failed to do so in others. The emergence of markets for specialty foods have been promoted by top-down policy initiatives and bottom-up entrepreneurial efforts. Far from providing the only relevant platform for food transition and innovation, the "New Nordic Food" manifesto has helped creating a territorialized action space for networks of food producers and distributors promoting diversity in local food and rural development. Some of the specialty food networks have succeeded in re-scaling their operations from a local to a national market. Today even large retailers and food processing companies have to pay notice to the ongoing changes among consumers. There is however a paradoxical constraint in a transition towards specialty food. A large-scale transition would imply that producers and consumers abandon precisely what constitute them - their exclusiveness.

The chapters were originally published in a special issue of European Planning Studies.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Emerging Nordic food approaches   1. Quality turns in Nordic food: a comparative analysis of specialty food in Denmark, Norway and Sweden   2. Sustainability transformations in the balance: exploring Swedish initiatives challenging the corporate food regime  3. How relationships can influence an organic firm’s network identity   4. It’s never too late to join the revolution! – Enabling new modes of production in the contemporary Danish food system   5. Storytelling and meal experience concepts   6. The reinvention of terroir in Danish food place promotion


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Jesper Manniche is a senior research fellow experienced within a range of research fields related to rural development including local food networks, innovation and knowledge creation, small businesses and entrepreneurship, and regional governance and policy.

Bjørnar Sæther is a professor in human geography at the University of Oslo, Norway, with a specialization in economic geography. His teaching and research activities are related to resource based industries, innovation in rural areas and sustainability issues.