We have a diverse group of 24 stakeholders involved in the RUGS project, including food producers, retailers, policy makers and third sector workers, as well as individuals from the insurance industry, energy sector, academia and consultancy. Our stakeholders provide key insights that allow us to identify and understand trends and potential future shocks along with the impacts they may have on the food system.
Our stakeholders play a key role shaping the direction of the project, in critiquing model results and identifying ways that we might mitigate the impact of negative shocks and trends to increase food system resilience.
In July 2017 the first of three project workshops took place. During this workshop stakeholders identified and discussed the key drivers that affect the food system. Four scenarios were developed which described the possible impacts of four food system shocks and preceding trends. Each scenario identified how connectivity within the food system increases volatility and vulnerability to rapid and widespread shock transmission.
Discussions also took place around the growing role of media and social media in shaping attitudes and behaviours towards food, with stakeholder interest in this area leading us to incorporate a new avenue of research into the RUGS project.
The next workshop will take place in June 2018. During the session we will discuss how we have incorporated some of the key themes from the first workshop into our model, discussing the model outputs and their implications. We will also spend time identifying characteristics of a resilient food system as well as intervention and mitigation measures that might limit the impacts that detrimental shocks and trends may have. We will share the key workshop outcome in our July blog post so keep a look out for this!