The Changing Meanings of Milk Production and Consumption in Finland from the 1950s to the Present Day
Taija KaarlenkaskiAcademy Research FellowKarelian Institute, Faculty of Social Sciences and Business Studies
The study examines the changes in the meanings and practices related to milk and dairy farming in Finland from the 1950s to the present day, focusing on 1) the history of milk promotion, 2) contemporary public discussion, and 3) the perceptions and future plans of dairy farmers. In terms of theory, the study combines the viewpoints and concepts of cultural studies, new materialism and human-animal studies. The research materials consist of advertisements and archival materials of milk promoting associations and dairy companies, discussions on social media and other internet platforms, as well as a web questionnaire and in-person interviews with contemporary dairy farmers. The study provides historically grounded new knowledge which can be utilised in the scientific and societal discussion on the changing agricultural and eating practices as well as identities related to these issues.