'Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns' (UN United Nations  (United Nations )). RIVM is investigating the environmental burden and health impact of Dutch dietary habits and how they can be improved by adapting food products and/or by choosing alternative foods. We also maintain a strong focus on socially responsible buying habits and re-use of waste products, also referred to as the circular economy. In doing so, we contribute to Sustainable Development Goal 12.

Food production has an impact on the environment, for instance through land use, water consumption, acidification, eutrophication and soil depletion. Sustainable food is defined as food that meets people’s nutritional needs, both now and in the future, while at the same time protecting ecosystems. RIVM is exploring what is needed in the Netherlands to achieve dietary habits that are both environmentally friendly and healthy.

We are also researching ‘substances of very high concern’, for instance in clothing. The aim is to make garments easier to recycle and to improve working conditions and mitigate environmental impact in production countries.