There is now ample evidence that food provisioning is a major determinant of the unprecedented and possibly irreversible changes in ecosystems. With high-input, resource-intensive agriculture and overfishing, the planet is facing very serious challenges in terms of freshwater availability, soil degradation, continuing deforestation, loss of biodiversity and depleted marine life. Agriculture and related land use contribute around one fifth of total global GHG emissions, and at the same time farming is being threatened by climate change. The dysfunction of the contemporary food system is also evinced by the co-existence of more than 800 million people in the world who are chronically undernourished and over 1.9 billion people who are overweight or obese. 
The dietary transition towards “Western diets”, with higher consumption of meat, sugars, and fats, is a major contributor to the changes in the ecosystem and has led to the adoption of unhealthy diets that are now acknowledged as the leading risk factor for deaths worldwide. There is consensus that less resource-intensive diets are absolutely necessary for mitigating climate change and that a shift towards more sustainable diets with a lower environmental footprint will reduce the pressure on the use of land, bluewater and freshwater resources and reduce pollution of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. At the same time, it is recognized that changing consumption habits is a complex endeavor that goes beyond individual behavior and involves collective social and institutional changes. 
These issues were addressed by the three keynote speakers, Harriet Friedmann (University of Toronto), Tim Lang (Centre for Food Policy, City, University of London), and Colin Sage (University College Cork, Ireland) who, at the end of Conference, synthesized the research by the presenters.    
Sixty-five papers covered the areas of consumers’ behavior, the role of  food procurement institutions, socio-technical innovations, place-based agricultural production including bio-cultural resources and new farming practices. Empirical evidence on both consumption and production practices was reported from countries with a wide range of socio-economic and ecological contexts including Europe (Austria, Bulgaria, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland) as well as countries as far away and as diverse as Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Turkey, the United States and Vietnam. The broad range of disciplines included nutrition, economics, sociology, anthropology, agronomy, environmental sciences, architecture and urban planning, demonstrating the richness and relevance of interdisciplinary dialog.  
“With 90 participants, we are happy to see that so many of them were young researchers, Ph.D. candidates, students and  alumni. The challenges that we are facing are known and it is our intention, with these Conferences and our Master in Food Studies, to continue to build and share knowledge leading to action through policies and projects, as implied by the subtitle of our Master ‘Policies for sustainable production and consumption’” said Maria Grazia Quieti, Conference-chair and Director of the Master in Food Studies.