23, 24 and 25 February 2017

Instituto de História Contemporânea. Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas. Universidade Nova de Lisboa.

The food supply chain has been a serious concern of the contemporary society. With the Industrial Revolution, the food supply paradigm suffered a profound change, both nutritionally and in the selection and classification of essential goods. Therefore, technological innovation allowed for an efficient response to successive political, economic, social and cultural rights over the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Food processing methods and distribution permitted the emergence of global food distribution networks. From the second half of the 20th century on, the demands of the consumer society boosted such processes of transformation and distribution aiming to diversify and improve the quality of diets that should be available at any time of the year and at more affordable prices.
Only after a late and slow process did Portugal join this global change of the eating habits. At a time when the origin and the type of food we eat is constantly in the spotlight, it is important to understand how the eating habits have evolved from the second half of the 19th century until now.
In this conference we intend to reflect on a) the implementation and development of manufacturing processes, including milling, canning, drying, pasteurization, fermentation, roasting, refining, freeze-drying, cooling and freezing; and on b) the means and distribution platforms, including cold chains, grocery stores and local markets.