Please now visit the Population Health Interventions Programme, at the MRC Epidemiology Unit
Archive content, summer 2019
Programme Lead: Prof Martin White
Almost all the food that we eat comes from commercial sources. Achieving healthier diets is therefore highly dependent on changing the commercial food system. Understanding such systems and their incentive structures, how they relate to consumers and shape their diets, and whether and how they can be modified are thus central to promoting healthier diets at a population level.
Our programme aims to:
- Improve understanding of the factors that shape diets at a population level
- Develop understanding of the key levers for change within food systems
- Identify and critically assess opportunities to evaluate the impacts of food system change on diet and health at a population level
- Translate evidence to enable changes in policy and practice nationally and internationally
Our research involves a critical evaluation of the role of commerce in supporting a healthy diet. We pursue research to understand the commercial food system and the social systems within which individuals consume food, and the interactions of these two worlds. Change in the commercial food system can come from within (through innovation) or externally (through regulation or incentives), and we are interested in the relative impacts of both approaches on diet and health. An important element of our work is to identify whether and how researchers can engage with the commercial food system without undermining the integrity of their science.
- Hannah Forde – UK Soft Drinks Industry Levy
- Kai Schulze – processed foods, diet and health
- Amy Yau – social inequalities in diet and health
- Louis Goffe (at Newcastle University) – take-away food, diet and heath