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Understanding transition in animal based food consumption: A case study in the city of Vadodara in Gujarat (India)

Fourat E., Kapadia S., Shah U., Zararia V., Bricas N.. 2018. Review of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Studies, 99 (2) : p. 189-205.

DOI: 10.1007/s41130-018-0076-7

India is experiencing a modernisation process characterised by rapid urbanisation and the emergence of a new middle class. This process is expected to lead to a change in lifestyles and dietary patterns, and notably higher consumption of animal based foods. The present article focuses on this changing dietary trend in the city of Vadodara in Gujarat (India). A stratified sample of 432 women and men was selected, representing Brahmin, non-Brahmin and Jain communities from high, medium and low socioeconomic strata. The results revealed that, in the transition process, the supposed protein shift from plant- to animal based foods takes specific forms in this cultural context because of more complex drivers that shape food consumption than the socioeconomic position in the society. It highlights that beyond the supra-determination of castes and socioeconomic classes, major drivers of this consumption are the norms and values attached to foods and their interrelations with eating practices according to spatiotemporal and social dimensions. This Indian case reveals that dietary change is not unidirectional towards the Western model but each culture has a unique form of transition.

Mots-clés : régime alimentaire; changement social; consommation; viande; religion; inde

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