With colleagues from Wageningen Plant Research and Wageningen Economic Research I have been involved in the research project ‘prosumerism’ (commissioned by AMS and Flevo Campus Almere) in which we studied the extent to which Almere citizens engage in their own food production – for example by growing it in their gardens or picking it in the wild. We used semi-structured interviews with people who can be considered ‘prosumers’ (hence: people who are involved in their food production) and conducted a questionnaire, to which we got 835 respondents.
An important finding is that most prosumers we spoke to are motivated mainly by the enjoyment they get from growing and processing something themselves – making their own wine or fruit juices, for instance. Health and sustainability are less important to most of them. Another important finding is that while a relatively large part of the questionnaire respondents (two thirds) engage in prosumption in some way, for most people these activities are very small-scale.
Jan Eelco Jansma, the project leader, wrote a blog about our work. Our report can be downloaded here. Both are in Dutch.