With the increasing focus on sustainable diets, how does this translate into consumer behaviour when making food choices and what are some practical messages that can make a real difference? In this podcast, Dr Joanna McMillan sits down with CSIRO researcher, Dr Brad Ridoutt and the CEO of Pollinate, Howard Parry-Husbands to discuss what the latest science tells us from an Australian perspective, what consumers are thinking and, most importantly, doing. Brad unpacks the complexity of sustainable diet research and discusses why reducing food waste is a priority. Howard highlights how the research can be translated into practical messages that resonate with consumers and how dietitians can help.


Howard Parry-Husbands is the CEO of Pollinate, one of Australia’s leading strategic consultancies and an expert in market research specialising in branding, innovations and communications development. Pollinate uses co-creation as the principle method to apply systems thinking to solve problems in a complex world. Howard is also a director of Social Soup, Australia’s leading Influencer platform and proud to be a non-executive director of Planet Ark, Australia’s most trusted non-confrontational and non-political environmental NGO focussed on behaviour change. Howard has worked on thought leadership for topics ranging from ‘What it means to be Australian’ for SBS to understanding youth for Junkee and as a passionate but pragmatic environmentalist is slightly obsessed with how the Australian forestry sector can become a transformative force to deliver a sustainable society. Howard is a sought after panellist, MC, conference and dinner speaker and in his spare time is studying towards a Masters in systems thinking and forestry at ANU, a keen runner and a dad to two fabulous children.


Dr Brad Ridoutt is a Principal Research Scientist with Australia’s national science agency – The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). His expertise is in life cycle sustainability assessment in the agriculture and food sectors which is used to address strategic challenges in relation to climate change, water scarcity, sustainable food systems, and sustainable diets. Dr Ridoutt is engaged in a range of international processes relating to the standardization of sustainability assessment and environmental labeling. His research is creating the main evidence base concerning the environmental impacts of dietary habits in Australia.


Dr Joanna McMillan is one of the country’s favourite and most trusted health and nutrition experts. She is a PhD qualified nutrition scientist, Accredited Practising Dietitian, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow with La Trobe University and Fellow of the Australasian Society of Lifestyle Medicine. Joanna is an experienced TV presenter. She has worked on The Today Show for over 15 years, is a host for ABC’s science show Catalyst, and is a regular on radio and in print media. She is a TEDx and international keynote speaker and MC and is the founder of Get Lean, an online lifestyle change program. She has authored several books including her latest The Feel-Good Family Food Plan and audio book Gutfull.


In this episode, we discuss:

  • The current Australian evidence about what key factors will make a difference in helping us achieve sustainable diets
  • Why sustainable diets are not as simple as changing food choices
  • The concept of guilt fatigue and why consumers are increasingly faced with it
  • Practical messages and tips that dietitians can recommend to clients to make their diets more sustainable

Additional resources

Meat & Livestock Australia website

This podcast is not, and is not intended to be, medical advice, which should be tailored to your individual circumstances. This podcast is for your information only, and we advise that you exercise your own judgment before deciding to use the information provided. Professional medical advice should be obtained before taking action.  Please see here for terms and conditions.


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