Back to Overview

On January 17, 2019, the EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, and Health released a groundbreaking report on healthy diets from sustainable food systems. This is the first full scientific review of what constitutes a healthy diet from a sustainable food systems perspective, and which actions can support and speed up food system transformation. 

The world currently has 821 million people who are undernourished, 2 billion people lack key micronutrients, and 2 billion people are overweight or obese and at risk of diseases related to overconsumption. At the same time, global food systems face the unprecedented challenge of feeding a growing and increasingly urbanized population, with global food production expected to increase by 70% by 2050.

Food systems are a major source of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), accounting for one-third of total emissions. They are the main user of fresh water, a leading driver of biodiversity loss, land-use change and cause eutrophication or dead zones in lakes and coastal areas. The composition of diets also determines the environmental impact of food and global average dietary GHG emissions from crop and livestock production will increase by 32% between 2009 and 2050, on a per capita level, if current global dietary patterns continue. 

Meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement targets to reduce carbon emissions means urgently and fundamentally changing the way we eat and produce food. But key questions remain unanswered and a lack of scientific consensus is slowing down governments, businesses and civil society actors who want to take action. This report endeavors to understand and address these issues, and provide guidance on how to solve them. 

Download and read the full report here