Project funding: sustainability and New Nordic Food

05.02.19 | Funding opportunities
The New Nordic Food programme has been an important driver for change in the food culture and the way we think about food in the Nordic countries. Although it started out in the high-end restaurant scene 15 years ago, the thinking behind New Nordic Food has been democratised and spread throughout society. These days, the movement inspires everything from street food, catering in the public sector and, last but by no means least, the food we make at home.


Opportunity category
Open calls
Wed, 01/05/2019 - 11:59 PM
Financial framework
Pool of approx. DKK 1.5 million; max. DKK 600.000 per project
Åland Islands
Faroe Islands

The global food system faces huge challenges, especially in affluent parts of the world like the Nordic Region, which are not even close to living up to our international commitments: our food consumption contributes to global warming and the loss of biodiversity. Too much food is wasted. Our diets are unhealthy. The food system could make a far more positive contribution to the economy by creating new jobs as well as growth, including on the geographical and social fringes of society.

Projects with long-term impact

The Nordic Council of Ministers is attempting to forge links between the transformative power of changes in food culture and democratisation of good food and the sustainability challenges we face as a society. To this end, it is calling for funding applications from projects that:

mobilise stakeholders and make a long-term impact on society

are organised in many different ways, including events, network meetings, communication campaigns, testing of new concepts, exchange visits

aim to develop Nordic thinking about food and maintain the relevance of New Nordic Food into the future

share knowledge and create new opportunities for co-operation between stakeholders in the Nordic countries.

Projects whose primary purpose is product- or concept development for commercial companies are ineligible for funding.

Food in the public sector, Nordic food culture and sustainable tourism

All projects that fulfil the criteria above will be eligible for funding. However, the Nordic Council of Ministers is particularly interested in projects on the themes of – food in the public sector, e.g. children in kindergartens and schools – Sustainable development and communication of Nordic food culture and new Nordic diets – Sustainable food tourism.

Selection criteria

All projects will be evaluated on the following criteria:

Nordic synergy
  • projects must involve participants from at least three Nordic countries and/or self-governing areas (Greenland, the Faroe Islands, Åland)
  • projects must seek multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral cooperation, build new networks and engage new target groups in New Nordic Food.

Projects must be innovative and generate new insights into the role of food in sustainable development.


Projects that are self-financing to a certain degree will be prioritised. The self-financing element can take the form of in-kind contributions such as working hours.


Project participants must be able to document their experience in the field. Please attach CVs or similar to the application.

Communication plan

Applications must include a plan for the external communication of the project activities. Projects must strive to expand the New Nordic Food narrative, preferably via multiple types of media platform.

Long-term plan

Applications must outline how networks, etc. created by the project can be self-sustaining after the project is completed.

Communication and reporting

Projects must submit reports on progress, challenges faced and any changes to the project at least quarterly to the Nordic Council of Ministers' Steering Group for New Nordic Food.

Projects must produce and distribute information from the project on relevant online platforms and as well as possible engage in relevant discussions in the Nordic countries regarding food and food culture. Use the hashtag #nordicfood.


Project applications must be submitted to the Nordic Council of Ministers Secretariat no later than Wednesday 1 May at 23:59. Applicants should expect notification of whether their projects have been approved or rejected by 15 June 2019.

Projects are expected to start in 2019 and be completed by 1 May 2021.


Senior advisor on food policy Mads Frederik Fischer-Møller, the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Secretariat,

Application process

Application forms (use the templates provided) and other relevant appendices must be submitted by the deadline (1 May 2019). Incomplete applications will not be processed.

Applications must be in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian or English.

The Nordic Council of Ministers’ Secretariat may contact applicants to discuss potential adjustments to the project.

The Nordic Council of Ministers' Steering Group for New Nordic Food will process the applications and select projects for funding. The Nordic Council of Ministers’ Secretariat is responsible for contact between the Nordic Council of Ministers and the applicants.

What is New Nordic Food?

In 2004, twelve Nordic chefs signed the “Manifesto for a New Nordic Cuisine” to demonstrate that Nordic cuisine deserved comparison with the best in the world, not only in terms of flavour and character but also for its level of ambition for quality and its charm as one of the great regional cuisines.

The Nordic governments spotted the manifesto’s potential to forge new paths and to add value to the Nordic food system – and do so in a healthy and environmentally sustainable manner. To back the movement, the Nordic food ministers signed the “Aarhus Declaration on New Nordic Food” in 2005. The Council of Ministers has continued to provide funding and help develop New Nordic Food ever since.

Contact information