Social & Cultural Food Studies

Director: Prof. Paul Erdkamp


In the past ten years, food research has gained tremendous interest in the humanities and social sciences. Sociologists, anthropologists, economists, historians, art historians, social geographers, linguists, philosophers, archaeologists, ethnologists, and social and cultural theorists devoted attention to the seemingly banal acts of shopping, cooking, eating and drinking. This was characterized by a myriad of approaches and themes, which comprised social and economic policy, health concerns, identity formation, sociability, inequality, signification, and globalization.

As of the 1970s, the Department of History of Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) plays an important role in this research field, in Belgium and on an international level. In recent years, colleagues from other departments have shown vivid interest in food studies, and today this expertise is present in various departments of the university. This attention and qualification led to the submitting of several research proposals dealing with food studies.


These researchers wanted to institutionalize the expertise by setting up a new research group at  Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Therefore, in April 2003, FOST (Social & Cultural Food Studies) was founded. FOST works in collaboration with the Flemish Interface Centre for Cultural Heritage (FARO) , the Institut Européen de l'Histoire de l'Alimentation and the Institut National de Recherche Agronomique.

FOST aims at consolidating the expertise by inviting (foreign) specialists to workshops and colloquia, by operating within networks, by publishing and contemplating about food studies, and by performing new (multidisciplinary) food research. This multidisciplinary, internationally rooted base guarantees a diversity of approaches, methodologies and theories around a common research field. Initially, interest was particularly oriented toward the 19th and 20th centuries, but recently it includes also Antiquity and the Early-Modern Period.

International Food History Master

VUB programme 'International Food History Master'

As of the academic year 2014-2015, students who are enrolled in the Master of Arts in History at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, can specialize in the 'Food History master'. Next to the compulsory courses, it will be possible to choose 30 ECTS within the field of food history in a collaboration between the VUB, university of Exeter, University of Leiden and the Unversité Rabelais in Tours. The Food History Master provides students the opportunity to gain international experience and to take courses in English. The Master's thesis can also be situated within this field of research. In 2018-2019, the programme offers the following courses: Food and Society in Classical Antiquity (P. Erdkamp), Consumption History 1500-1800 (W. Ryckbosch), Themes in Cultural History (J. Tyssens) and Living and Surviving: Economics, Ecology and Demography from Antiquite to the present (University of Gent). For more information take a look at the brochure or at VUB's official programme.


FWO: Rethinking Roman Nutrition. Assessing the nutritional biochemistry and stable isotope chemistry of archaeobotanical cereals and pulses from Roman Egypt (2018-2022)

Cereals and pulses have been important staples in human diets since the Neolithic Revolution. Despite recognition for their role as energy suppliers, the nutritional appraisal by archaeologists and historians of especially cereals has been far from positive. Instead, cereals have been held responsible for the alleged poor nutritional status of the Romans. This study aims to obtain direct data on the nutritional qualities of ancient cereals to estimate nutritional values of ancient Egyptian cereals and pulses. To this end we use perfectly preserved, desiccated archaeological seeds from sealed granaries from the village of Karanis in Roman Egypt, presently at the Kelsey Museum, Ann Arbor. Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope analysis will be performed on the carbonised seeds from Karanis in order to gain insights in agricultural practices and the ultimate economic decline of the site. This innovative study may revolutionize our perspective on Roman diet and nutrition (P. Erdkamp, F. Heinrich, M. Elskens, L.Motta).

 IRP 11 - Tradition and Naturalness of animal products within  a societal context of change (2018-2022)

Interdisciplinary research programme with Frédéric Leroy, Wouter Ryckbosch, Malaika Brengman, Peter Scholliers, Paul Erdkamp en Luc De Vuyst.

FWO-postdoc (2014-2018)

  • Nelleke Teughels examines if and how food was presented and served by the Belgian participants at world exhibitions from 1851 to 2010. More...

 Free Research (2015-2020)

  • Albena Shkodrova researches how recipes were used as an act of resistance in Communist Bulgaria.More...
  • Rob Blijleven studies the history of wine commerce to and consumption in the Netherlands (Holland) from the mid-18th to the late 20th century.
  • Gaëlle Vaningelgem studies the relationship between food(ways) and the development of the railroad system in Belgium, and particularly in Brussels, in the 19th and 20th centuries.


INTERREG - Scars of History (2010-2015)

  • Karen Arijs explores the cultural construction of the cross-border region Dutch and Belgian Limburg in the 19th and 20the centuries. More...

IRP  2 – Food Quality, Safety, and Trust since 1950: Societal Controversy and Biotechnological Challenges (2013-2017)

  • Filip Degreef researches the trust relationship between consumers and retailers within a broader societal framework. More…

GOA - Omnivore Paradoxes in History. Food Traditions and Novelties in Europe since 1800 (2008-2014)

  • Nathalie Parys examines the influence of French cuisine on Belgian and Dutch cookbooks. More...
  • Willem Scheire explores how refrigerators were 'constructed' in Belgium in the second half of the 20th century. More...
  • Sarah Daniels examines changing eating and cooking practices using time budget data as well as household accounts. More...

FWO - Vlaanderen (2009-2018)

  • Glenn Steenhouwer investigates the hotel and catering industry in Brussels between 1910 and 1940, dealing with the staff's labor situation, their labor relations and their identity. More...
  • An-Sofie Vanhouche investigates the role and significance of food in a contemporary prison context.More...

OZR (2010-2017)

  • Olivier de Maret deals with Italian immigrants in Brussels, their meeting-places and the construction of identity linked to food and foodways between 1880 to 1935. More...
  • Jon Verriet investigates the history and the image of canned foods in Belgium and the Netherlands. More...


GOA - European Culture and Identities. Diversity and Convergence in Food Habits, 1800-2000

  • Daniëlle De Vooght explored the food habits of the aristocracy, more particularly the food culture at the nineteenth century royal court of Leopold II. More...
  • Steven Van den Berghe wanted to find out whether and how social and cultural relationships surface in language use about restaurants in the (second half of the) 20th century. More...
  • Nelleke Teughels Investigated the emergence of food chains and the impact of modern sales and advertising techniques for the daily routine of consumers. More...


  • Inge Mestdag looked for changes in the (Flemish) eating habits by examining time budget data. Her research involved organizing a meal and how to fit it in daily life. More...


  • This HOA project is a combined effort with IMDO (Industrial Microbiology and Food Biotechnology). Historian Anneke Geyzen examined the myths, perceptions and constructions surrounding the quality of artisanal fermentable foods. More...


  • Joeri Januarius examines material culture, everyday life and consumption of miners in Belgium between 1900 and 1960. More...

Flemish government

  • Sofie Onghena prepared an exhibition on aristocratic desserts of the 19th century. More...

Free research

Publications since 2011

  • The full list of publications of FOST-members is to be found here.
  •         2020 
  • Heinrich, F. & Hansen, A., "Mud bricks, cereals and the agricultural economy. Archaeobotanical investigations at the New Kingdom town", AcrossBorders 2 Living in New Kingdom Sai. Budka, J. (ed.). Vienna: Austrian Academy of Sciences Press, p. 275-349 
  • Vanouche, A-S. & Beyens, K., "Prison Foodways", Appetite, no. 147
  • Shkodrova, A., "Rediscovering Europe and national Cuisine. How EU integration is shaping food tastes in Sofia and Belgrade in the 21st century", Appetite, Volume 133, 1 February 2019, p. 10-17.
  • Ryckbosch, W, de Mûelenaere, N.  & Lambert, B., "Beter na de Plaag? De impact van gezondheidscrisissen op samenleving en economie in het verleden", in Brengman, M. (ed), Post viraal naar een nieuw normaal : VUB-stemmen over de impact van corona op onze samenleving, BrusselVUBPRESS, p. 85-92.
  • Scholliers, P., "A food craze in Europe", Petits Propos Culinaires, no. 116, p. 46-66
  • Scholliers, P., "Wit of bruin?", Patakon. Tijdschrift voor bakerfgoed, no. 11: 1, p.3-18
  • Scholliers, P., "Des calories dans notre assiette", Histoire mondiale de la Flandre. Brussels: Renaissance du Livre, p. 349-354
  • Scholliers, P., "La controverse culinaire: la réception de la 'calorie' en Belgique, 1890-1913", in  Les Enjeux de l'Information et de la Communication. 21, 3, p. 13-27.
  • 2019
  • Erdkamp, P., Ryckbosch, W. & Scholliers, P., A swift overview of eating and drinking since Antiquity, in Handbook of eating and drinking (ed., H. Meiselman), Cham (Springer Verlag)

  • Heinrich, F., "Cereals and bread", The Routledge Handbook of Diet and Nutrition in the Roman World. Erdkamp, P. & Holleran, C. (eds.). Abingdon-on-Thames: Routledge, p. 101-115

  • Heinrich, F., "Pulses", The Routledge Handbook of Diet and Nutrition in the Roman World. Erdkamp, P. & Holleran, C. (eds.). Abingdon-on-Thames: Routledge, p. 116-128

  • Scholliers, P. & Degreef, F. (eds), Trust in the Hand that Feeds You (special issue of Food and Foodways), with texts by F. Degreef, M. Bruegel, C. Salzman, T. Mitsuda, T. Walravens, P. Scholliers, S. De Iulio, S. Kovacs & D. Orange Ravachol.

  • P. Scholliers & J. Tyssens, "Pauvreté et accès à l'alimentation au fil du temps: de la distribution à l'autonomie?", in: D. Myaux (ed), Aide alimentaire, Brussel (Academia), p. 53-88.

  • Geyzen, A., Ryckbosch W., Scholliers, P., Teughels, N. & Leroy F., 'Food Innovations and Tradition, Interplay and Dynamics', in: Galanakis, C. (ed), Innovations in Traditional Foods, Science Direct, 2019, 27-51.

  • Van den Eeckhout, P., "Dricks i västeuropeiska restauranger och kaféer före första världskriget", in: ArbetarHistoria, 167-168 (2018), 30-35.

  • Scholliers, P. 'De waarde van een boterham', Vlaamse Molens 13: 1, 31-34.

  • Jensen, T., Nyvang, C., Scholliers, P. & Atkins, P. (eds), Food and Age in Europe, 1800 - 2000 (Routledge), 2019

  • Scholliers, P., "Little Adults. Children's Diets in Brussels in the 1830s and 1850s", in Jensen, Nyvant, Scholliers & Atkins (eds), Food and Age in Europe, 1800-2000, London & New York (Routledge), 2019, 59-71.

  • 2018
  • Erdkamp, P. & Holleran, C. (eds). The Routledge Handbook of Diet and Nutrition in the Roman World, London - New York: Routledge.

  • Beyers, L, Segers, Y. & Geyzen, A., "Streekspecialiteiten, culinaire identiteiten en vererfgoeding. Een inleiding, Volkskunde 119: 3, p. 265-278

  • Teughels, N., "Culinaire uitdagingen van identiteit en machtsverhoudingen tijdens de Brusselse wereldtentoonstelling van 1935", Volkskunde 119:3, p.303-320

  • Shkodrova, A., "Investigating the history of meanings of a dish", Volkskunde 119:3, p. 343-365

  • Petracci, M., Soglia, F. & Leroy, F., "Rabbit meat in need of a hat-trick: from tradition to innovation (and back)", Meat Science, July 2018, 93-100.

  • Scholliers, P., "Les dépenses au café dans le budget des ouvriers aux alentours de 1850", Estaminets et cafés: histoires bruxelloises, Bruxelles: Bruxellesfabriques, 2018, 47-51.

  • Scholliers, P. , "Calorieën op ons bord", in M. Beyen e.a (eds), Wereldgeschiedenis van Vlaanderen. Kalmthout: Uitgeverij Polis, 2018, p. 349-354.

  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2017), "The Parisian Cooks’ Union and Chefs de Cuisine (1880s-1930s): Arch-enemies or Allies?", Food & History, 15: 1-2, 229-254.
  • Shkodrova, A. "From duty to pleasure in the cookbooks of communist Bulgaria" , (2018), Food, Culture & Society, 21, #4, 468-487.
  • Leroy, F., Brengman, M., Ryckbosch, W. & Scholliers P. (2018), "Meat in the post-truth era. Mass-media discourses on health and disease in the attention economy", Appetite, 125, 345-355.
  •  Shkodrova, A. (2018), "Revisiting Coca-Cola's "accidental" entry into Communist Europe", Gastronomica; 18:2, 59-72.
  • Scholliers, P. (2018), "The popularization of a new nutritional concept: the calorie in Belgium, 1914-1918", in: Proteins, pathologies and politics. Dietary innovations and disease from the 19th century (eds. D. Gentilcore & M. Smith), London - New York: Bloomsbury, 111-124.
  •  Scholliers, P. (2018), "Entre public et privé: imaginer la sécurité alimentaire à Bruxelles au début du XIXe siècle", in: Approvisioner la ville. Flux alimentaires et circulations urbaines du Moyen Age au XIXe siècle (éds. Knaepen, A., Loir, C. & Wilkin, A). Brussels: Editions de l'Université de Bruxelles, 155-166.
  • Scholliers, P. (2018), "The Kitchen Dispute: the Reception of the 'Calorie' in Belgium, 1890-1913", Dublin Gastronomy Symposium (online publication)
  • 2017
  • Maes, E., Vanhouche, A-S., Scholliers, P. & Beyens, K. (2017) “A vehicle of punishment? Prison diets in Belgium circa 1900”, Food, Culture and Society. 20, 1, 2017, p. 77-100.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2017), "The role of modern malnutrition in modelling Roman malnutrition: Aid or anachronism?" (with F. Heinrich), Journal of Archaeological Sciences: Reports.
  • Scholliers, P. (2017) “Le régime alimentaire des enfants entre 1830 et 1860 à Saint-Jean et Saint-Pierre”, ., Les Cahiers de la Fonderie. 52, 2017, p. 48-54.
  • Scholliers, P. (2017) “Norms and practices of children's diets in Brussels hospitals, 1830-1914”, Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth. 10, p. 339-361.
  • Daniels, S. & Glorieux, I. (2017) “Cooking up Manliness: A Practice-Based Approach to Men’s At-Home Cooking and Attitudes Using Time-Use Diary Data, in: Food, Masculinities and Home. Interdisciplinary Perspectives. Szabo, M. & Koch, S. L. (eds.). London: Bloomsbury , p. 31-58.
  • Verriet, J. & Leroy, F. (2017) “Yogurt's Flexible Image during its Rise in Popularity in Post-War Belgium”, Appetite. 108, p. 132-140.
  • Vandevoorde, H. (2017), "De functie van cafés voor de schrijvers van de Nieuwe Gids en Van Nu en Straks". In: Allen zijn welkom. Ontmoetingsplaatsen in de Lage Landen rond 1900, Uitgeverij Verloren, 283-300.
  • 2016
  • Beyers, L. & Scholliers, P. (2016) “Aan tafel. Eten maakt de stad”, In Antwerpen à la carte: Eten en de stad van de Middeleeuwen tot vandaag. Beyers, L. & Van Damme, I. (eds.). Kontich & Antwerp: BAI, p. 128-165.
  • Scholliers, P. (2016) “Kinderen en hun voeding in Brusselse ziekenhuizen in de 19e eeuw”, Tijd-Schrift. Heemkunde en lokaal-erfgoedpraktijk in Vlaanderen, 3, p. 64-79.
  • Teughels, N. & Van Damme (2016) “Boodschappen doen”. In: Antwerpen à la carte. Eten in de stad, van de middeleeuwen tot vandaag. Beyers, L. & Van Damme, I. (eds.). Antwerpen: BAI, , p. 60-97 .
  • Verriet, J. (2016) “The Domestication Of Innovation: The Image Of Canned Foods In The Netherlands, 1945-1985”, in:  Exploring the Materiality of Food “Stuffs”: Archaeological and Anthropological Perspectives. Steel, L. & Zinn, K. (eds.). London: Routledge, p. 39-56.
  • 2015
  • Special issue by FOST of Appetite: 'Convenience Foods: Shopping, Cooking & Eating' by guest editor Peter Scholliers. Click here to view the full issue:
  • Scholliers, P. (2015), 'Convenience foods. What, why, and when', Appetite, 94, 2-6. Full text.
  • Verriet, J. (2015), 'Convenience and the hierarchy of meal preparation. Cooking and domestic education in the Netherlands, 1910-1930', Appetite, 94,7-12. Full text.
  • Teughels, N. (2015), 'Bringing comfort and convenience to the colonial table: Delhaize Frères & Cie's colonial department in the 1920s and 1930s', Appetite, 94, 13-20. Full text.
  • Geyzen, A. (2015), 'The ideology of convenience. Canned foods in women's magazines (Flanders, 1945-1960)', Appetite, 94, 21-25. Full text.
  • Degreef, F. (2015), 'Convenience foods, as portrayed by a consumer organisation. Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats (1960-1995)', Appetite, 94, 26-33. Full text.
  • Jacobs, M. (2015), 'Chips in black boxes? Convenience life span, parafood, brandwidth, families, and co-creation', Appetite, 94, 34-39. Full text.
  • Leroy, F. & Degreef, F. (2015), 'Convenient meat and meat products. Societal and technological issues', Appetite, 94, 40-46. Full text.
  • Vanhouche, A.-S. (2015), 'Acceptance or refusal of convenience food in present-day prison',Appetite, 94, 47-53. Full text.
  • Daniels, S. & Glorieux, I. (2015), 'Convenience, food and family lives. A socio-typological study of household food expenditures in 21st-century Belgium', Appetite, 94, 54-61. Full text.
  •  Special issue of Food & Foodways (23.1-2 (2015) 1-141) Tastes of homes: exploring food and place in twentieth-century Europe edited by Olivier de Maret and Anneke Geyzen with their editorial titled 'Tastes of homes: exploring food and place in twentieth-century Europe.'
  • De Maret, O. & Geyzen, A. (2015), 'Tastes of Homes: Exploring Food and Place in Twentieth-Century Europe', Food & Foodways, 23 (1-2), 1-13. Full text.
  • Scheire, W. (2015), '"Bring Joy to Your Home with the Real Frigidaire": Advertising the Refrigerator to Belgian Female Consumers, 1955-1965', Food & Foodways, 23 (1-2), 57-79. Full text.
  • Book edited by Nelleke Teughels and Peter Scholliers: Teughels, N. & Scholliers, P. (2015) (eds.), A taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. Aldershot, Ashgate. Click here for more information.
  • Teughels, N. (2015).'Introduction,' Teughels, N. & Scholliers, P. (eds.), A taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. Aldershot, Ashgate, 1-10.
  • Teughels, N. (2015).'Food at the 1910 Brussels Exhibition: Spaces of Consumption and the Articulation of National Identity,' Teughels, N. & Scholliers, P. (eds.), A taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. Aldershot, Ashgate, 165-182.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P.(2015).'Foreign Hospitality Workers at the 1910 Brussels World and International Exhibition,' Teughels, N. & Scholliers, P. (eds.), A taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. Aldershot, Ashgate, 257-274.
  • Publications in academic journals and books:
  • Parys, N. (2015). 'Culinaire beeldvorming in negentiende-eeuwse Nederlandse kookboeken.',Groniek, 202, 19-39.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2015), "Supplying the cities", in: A Companion to Food in the Ancient World (J. Wilkins & R. Nadeau eds), Oxford (Wiley - Blackwell), 183-194.
  • Jacobs, M. (2015). 'Beter hier dan verder. Liminaliteit, "traditionele koffietafels" en vaten bier in Vlaanderen,' Ingels, T. (ed.), R.I.P. Aspecten van 200 jaar begrafeniscultuur in Vlaanderen. Gent, Gent Academia Press, 141-168.
  • Daniels, S. (2015). 'Cooking up manliness: A practice-based approach of men's at-home cooking and attitudes using time-use diary data', Szabo, M. and Koch, S. (eds.) Food, masculinities and home. London, Bloomsbury.
  • Scholliers, P. (2015), 'Belgium', Goldstein, D. (ed.) The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets, Oxford, New York, Oxford University Press, 53-55.
  • Scholliers, P. (2015), 'Godiva', Goldstein, D. (ed.) The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets, Oxford, New York, Oxford University Press, 306.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2015), 'Supplying the cities', Wilkins, J. (ed.) A companion to food in the ancient world. Oxford, Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Verriet, J. (2015), ''Een ongevaarlijk avontuur': de beeldvorming omtrent buitenlandse eetculturen in Nederland, 1950-1970', Volkskunde, 116.2, 177-192.
  • Van Den Eeckhout, P. (2015), 'A Bruxelles on licencie d'abord les Belges. La crise et le secteur des hôtels, restaurants et cafés', Les Cahiers de la Fonderie, 50, 89-94.
  • Degreef, F. (2015), "Making sense of new food technologies and trust in food (1960-1995)", in Tasting Cultures (Pires M.J., ed), Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 53-70.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2015), 'Waiters, Waitresses and Their Tips in Western Europe before World War I', International Review of Social History, 60, 3 (2015), 349-378.
  • Scholliers, P. (2015), 'Pouvoir d'achat et alimentation des salariés pendant la crise des années 1930', Les Cahiers de la Fonderie, 50, 56-62.
  • 2014
  • Geyzen, A. (2014), 'Doctoraatsonderzoek. Culinaire vererfgoeding in Vlaanderen tussen 1945 en 2000. Een historisch-gastrolinguïstische analyse', Journal of Belgian History, 44, 241-244.
  • Teughels, N. (2014), 'Mag het iets meer zijn? Kleine kruidenierswinkels worden big businees, Delhaize Freres & Cie (1867-1940)', Leuven University Press, Leuven. Click here for more information or to purchase a copy.
  • Scholliers, P. (2014), 'Constructing New Expertise: Private and Public Initiatives for Safe Food (Brussels in the First Half of the Nineteenth Century)', Medical History, 58, 4, pp.546-563.
  • Scholliers, P. (2014), 'Global Food Developments', Freedman, P.; Chaplin, J. & Albala, K. (eds.),Food in Time and Place. The American Association Companion to Food History, pp.340-363.
  • Scholliers, P. (2014), 'Belçika'da biftek ve patates kizartmasi: (tarihsel) bir sapmaya deger',Yemek ve Kültür, issue Summer 2014, pp.52 - 60.
  • Arijs, K. (2014), ''Die aan't verleden raakt kan altijd tooveren'. Twee standbeelden voor Hendrik van Veldeke: lokaal iniatief en Limburgse identiteit', Jaarboek van het Sociaal-Historisch Centrum voor Limburg, LIX, 81-103.
  • Januarius, J. (2014), 'In de voorhoede van de consumptiemaatschappij? Koopkracht en consumptie van Belgisch-Limburgse mijnwerkers in de jaren 1950 en 1960', Jaarboek van het Sociaal-Historisch Centrum voor Limburg, 105-123
  • Leroy, P., Scholliers, P. & Amilien, V. (2014), 'Elements of Innovation and Tradition in Meat Fermentation: Conflicts and Synergies', International Journal of Food Microbiology, issue 2014.
  • 2013
  • Parys, N. (2013) 'Cooking up a culinary identity for Belgium. Gastrolinguistics in two Belgian cookbooks (19th century)', Appetite, 71, 218-231
  • Verriet, J. (2013) 'Ready Meals and Cultural Values in the Netherlands, 1950-1970', Food & History, vol.11, n.1, p. 123-153
  • De Maret, O. (2013) 'More Than Just Getting By: Italian Food Businesses in Brussels at the Turn of the Twentieth Century', Food & Foodways, 21, pp. 108-13
  • Geyzen, A. (2013) 'Food preservation in Flemish women's magazines, 1945-1960', in: Derek J. Oddy & Alain Drouard (eds.), The food industries of Europe in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (Farnham & Burlington: Ashgate)
  • Leroy, F.; Geyzen, A.; Janssens, M.; De Vuyst, L.; Scholliers, P. (2013) 'Meat fermentation at the crossroads of innovation and tradition: A historical outlook', Trends in Food Science & Technology.Click here to read the article.
  • Scholliers, P. (2013), 'Food Recommendations in Domestic Education, Belgium 1890-1940',Paedagogica Historica. Click here to read the article.
  • Scholliers, P. (2013), 'Ten Years of Food & History: la sfida è partita', Food & History, vol.10, n. 2, p.27 - 41
  • Scholliers, P. & Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013) 'Feeding growing cities in the 19th and 20th centuries: problems, innovations, and reputations, in: A.Murcott, W Belasco & P. Jackson (eds),The handbook of food research (Londen & New York:Bloomsbury), p.68-81.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013) 'Allen daarheen! Koks en kelners op de Wereldtentoonstelling van 1913 in Gent', Brood & Rozen, 1, 29-51.
  • Scholliers, P. & Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013), 'Feeding growing cities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries: problems, innovations , and reputation.' In: The handbook of food research, pp.69 - 81, eds. Anne Murcott, Warren Belasco, Peter Jackson, published by Bloomsbury
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013), 'The history of labour and labour relations in hotels and restaurants in Western Europe and the United States in the 19th and 20th centuries: an introduction' In: Food & History, vol.11, n. 2, pp.199 - 221
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013), 'Cooks and Waiters on the Move: the World and International Exhibition in Ghent, 1913, as a Destination for Hospitality Workers.'  In: Food & History, vol.11, n. 2, pp. 287 - 316
  • Caestecker, F. & Van den Eeckhout, P. (2013), 'Comme les sauturelles sur un champ de maïs mûr: the Belgian unions and alien labour in hotels and restaurants in the 1930.' Food & History, vol.11, n. 2, pp.355 - 377
  • Erdkamp, P. (2013), 'The food supply of the Capital'. Erdkamp, P. (ed.) The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Rome, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, pp.262-277.
  • 2012
  • Arijs, K. (2012). 'Onderzoek naar constructie van identiteit in een grensregio: verkennend literatuuroverzicht', Mededelingenblad van de Belgische Vereniging voor Nieuwste Geschiedenis, n. 1, pp.15 - 18
  • Daniels S., Glorieux I., Minnen J. & Van Tienoven J.P. (2012) 'More than preparing a meal? Concerning the meaning of home cooking', Appetite, 58, (DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2012.02.-040), 1050-1056
  • Daniels, S. & Minnen, J. (2012) 'Meer dan honger stillen? Over de betekenissen van huishoudelijk koken', in: Mark Elchardus & Ignace Glorieux (Eds.), Voorspelbaar Uniek. Dieper graven in de symbolische samenleving, 166-191.
  • De Maret, O. (2012). 'Italianen in Brussel rond 1900', Tijd-Schrift, 2:2, 40-51
  • De Vooght, D. (2012). The king invites. Performing power at a courtly table. Brussel: Peter Lang. More information here.
  • De Vooght, D. (Ed.) (2012). Royal Taste. Food, Power and Status at the European Courts after 1789. Farnham: Ashgate. More information here.
  • Geyzen,A., Scholliers, P & Leroy,F. (2012) 'Innovative traditions in swiftly transforming foodscapes: an exploratory essay', Trends in Food Science & Technology (doi: 10.1016/j.tifs.2011.12.003) 1-6.
  • Geyzen, A. (2012), 'Marchands ambulants, réglementation et police à Bruxelles au XIXe siècle'. Le Mouvement Social, 238: 1, 53 – 64
  • Januarius, J. (2012) 'Industrial representations of Belgian Limburg miners in the 1950s: photographing corporate culture, labour, and everyday life', Depth of Field ,2. Click here to read the article.
  • Scheire, W. (2012) 'Geschiedschrijving van het evidente. Het verhaal van de koelkast',Volkskunde: Tijdschrift over de Cultuur van het Dagelijks Leven, 113, 129-151
  • Scholliers,P. (2012) 'Eating out', in: Martin Bruegel (ed.), A cultural history of food in the age of empire, 107-122.
  • Kyri W. Claflin & Peter Scholliers (eds.) (2012), Writing food history. A global perspective. Clickhere for more information.
  • Parasecoli, F. & Scholliers, P. (eds.) (2012). A Cultural History of Food.
  • Scholliers, P. (2012). Deux siècles de peurs et plaisirs de la table.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. & Scholliers, P. (2012). 'The Proliferation of Brands: The Case of Food in Belgium, 1890-1940'. Enterprise and Society, 13:1, 53 – 84
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2012). 'Shopping for food in Western Europe in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.', Food & History, 10, 1, 71-82
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. (2012). 'Restaurants in Western Europe and the United States in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries: an introduction.', Food & History, 10, 1, 143-153
  • Erdkamp, P. (2012) (ed.). A cultural history of food. Volume 1. Antiquity. Oxford, Berg.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2012), 'Food security, safety and crises', Erdkamp, P. (2012) (ed.). A cultural history of food. Volume 1. Antiquity. Oxford, Berg, pp. 57-74.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2012), 'Introduction. Food and commensality in the Ancient Near East', Erdkamp, P. (2012) (ed.). A cultural history of food. Volume 1. Antiquity. Oxford, Berg. pp.1-19
  • 2011
  • De Vooght, D. (2011). 'De koning der Belgen nodigt uit. Machtsnetwerken rondom een koninklijke eettafel (1831-1909)', Museum Dynasticum , XXIII/1, 27-33.
  • De Vooght, D., 'Noble dining guests at the Belgian royal court of the nineteenth century', in: Janssens, P. (ed.), Vivre noblement. Les styles de vie de la noblesse belge, XVe-XXIe siècle. De veranderende levensstijl van de Belgische adel, 15de-21ste eeuw. The changing lifestyle of the Belgian nobility, 15th-21st century (special issue Belgisch Tijdschrift voor Filologie en Geschiedenis88 (2010)), 479-496.
  • De Vooght, D., 'Cooking Networks', in: Barnett, G.A. (ed.), Encyclopedia of Social Networks(Davis: SAGE Publications, 2011).
  • Geyzen, A. (2011). 'Popular discourse on nutrition, health and indulgence in Flanders, 1945-1960',Appetite, DOI 10.1016/j.appet.2011.01.004.
  • Teughels, N. (2010). Le produit dans la vitrine: devantures et dioramas en Belgique, 1870-1940. In: Bruegel, M., Nicoud, M. & Barloesius, E. (Eds), Le choix des aliments. Information et pratiques alimentaires de la fin du Moyen Age à nos jours. Tours: Presses Universitaires François Rabelais/Presses Universitaires de Rennes, pp. 49-76.
  • Antonella Campanini, Peter Scholliers & Jean-Pierre Williot (eds.) (2011) Manger en Europe. Patrimoines, échanges, identités (Brussel: Peter Lang, 2011).
  • Scholliers, P. & Van den Berghe, S. (2011). 'Esquisse sur l'identité d'une ville: Bruxelles et sa cuisine aux XIXe et XXe siècles', in: Campanini, A., Scholliers, P. & Williot, J.-P. (Eds). Manger en Europe. Patrimoines, échanges, identités. Bruxelles: P.I.E. Peter Lang, pp. 183-208.
  • Scholliers, P. & Van den Eeckhout, P. (2011). The Laboratory, the Public, and the Construction of Food Safety in Brussels (1840s-1910s), in: Journal of Social History, Summer 2011, pp. 1143-1159.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. & Scholliers, P. (2011). 'The Belgian Multiple Food Retailer Delhaize Le Lion and its clientele, 1867 - 1914', Essays in Economic and Business History, 29, 87-100.
  • Van den Eeckhout, P. & Scholliers, P. (2011) 'The strategy of a Belgian multiple grocer: Delhaize-Le Lion, 1867-1940. An essay in comparative retailing history.', Entreprise et Histoire, 3, 41-63
  • Erdkamp, P. (2011), 'Manpower and food supply during the First and Second Punic Wars' Dexter Hoyos (ed.), A companion to the Punic Wars, Malden/Oxford, Wiley-Blackwell, pp.58-76.
  • Erdkamp, P. (2011), 'Jews and Christians at the dinner table. A study in social and religious interaction' Food and History, 8, pp.71-107.

FOST Calendar

  • Call for Papers: 23rd SIEF International Ethnological Food Research Conference: FOOD, PEOPLE AND THE CITY. COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVES (Museum aan de stroom, Antwerp, September 2020). All information via dr Leen Beyers.
  • Climate and society in Ancient worlds. Diversity in collapse and resilience: call for papers (Brussels, 22-24 May 2019). Contact prof. P. Erdkamp.
  • Colloquium LOPPEM 1918. De koning, de Grote Oorlog en het sociale contract (Loppen, 27 oktober 2018), met lezing van P. Scholliers "52 ellendige maanden en hun nasleep: honger en (wan)beleid in België".
  • Food In Prison. International and Multidisciplinary Perspectives (Bozar, Brussels, 21 & 22 September 2018)
  • Food - a history of European encounters and exchanges. 8 May 2018 (18:00-21:30), a talk at the House of European History.

Food is probably one of the most diverse European heritages among those that result from encounters through the ages. Today we live in a globalised world of eating cultures and products. However, from ancient times onwards, exchanges have shaped what we eat and how we eat it.

To what extent can our food habits be considered part of European heritage? How does the history of cooking, drinking and eating in Europe illustrate the fertile and impactful contacts that have existed between different regions, nations and continents? Can local eating traditions survive in a context of increasing culinary uniformity?  Join us to discuss this everyday-life topic with food history and anthropology specialists, on the occasion of the last month of the House of European History's first temporary exhibition "Interactions". 

After the debate, you will have the opportunity to visit the exhibition where culinary encounters and exchanges are presented in a lively and hands-on way, and to taste some finger food prepared by the chef of the museum's restaurant.


Prof. Peter Scholliers, FOST (Social & Cultural Food Studies), Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Prof. Vintila Mihailescu, National School of Political Studies and Administration, Bucharest

Dr. Albena Shkodrova, FOST (Social & Cultural Food Studies), Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Dr. Loïc Bienassis, Institut Européen d’Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation, Université de Tours

Moderator: Christine Dupont, House of European History

To register for this event please e-mail historia-learning@ep.europa.eu 


  • Food and Drink in Communist Europe. International scientific conference (19&20 April 2018, Brussels).

The event, organized by FOST with the support of the Free University of Brussels, VUB, KULeuven, FWO and FARO, gathered top researchers from the field. The  program could be found here. Check the website for updates, as we intend to publish soon the abstracts from the conference.

  • Matinee lecture Dr. Nelleke Teughels: Mag het iets meer zijn? (28.06.2015)

FOST researcher Dr. Nelleke Teughels will present a matinee session titled 'Mag het iets meer zijn?' at the MIAT (Gent) (in Dutch). Click here for more information.

  • Call for Papers Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food (15.01.2016-16.01.2016).

Call for papers for the third edition of the Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food. The title of next years edition is Fire, Knives and Fridges. The material culture of cooking tools and techniques. Applications should be sent by the deadline of 30 April 2015. Click here for more information. 

  • Call for Papers: Inter-disciplinary.Net's FOOD4: Constructing and Defining Food Practices (15.09.2015-17.09.2015).

The Inter-disciplinary.Net - network invites papers and panel proposal for the FOOD4: Constructing and Defining Food Practices conference (Mansfield College, Oxford) which is part of the Making Sense of: project. Deadline for abstracts is the 1st of May, 2015. Click here for more information.

  • Trusting the hand that feeds you. Understanding the historical evolution of trust in food (07.09.2015-09.09.2015).

FOST research group will host the conference Trusting the hand that feeds you. Understanding the historical evolution of trust in food in Brussels from 7 to 9 September, 2015. Click here to visit the conference website.

  • New book: Teughels, N., Scholliers, P. (eds.) (2015). A Taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Ashgate Publishing.

New book edited by Nelleke Teughels and Peter Scholliers: A Taste of Progress: Food at International and World Exhibitions in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries published by Ashgate. Click here for more information.

  • Registration is open for the Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food (16.01.2015 - 17.01.2015)

Registration for the Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food (16 and 17 January 2015). The topic of this year's edition is Food, Hunger and Conflict. Keynote speech by Josep L. Barona. Click here for more information and registration.

  • (16.10.2014) Master Class Food in Prison

FOST researcher An-Sofie Vanhouche organises the Master class 'Food in Prison' on the 16th of Octobre, 2014 at Faro, Brussels. Click here for more information or to apply.

  • (01.09.2014) Paper presentations by FOST Researchers

Filip Degreef will present a paper titled 'A Making Sense: New Food Technologies and Trust in Food (1960-1995)' at the 3rd Global Conference of inter-disciplinary.net at Mansfield College, Oxford (15.09.2014-17.09.2014). Click here for more information.

Dr. Anneke Geyzen will present her PhD dissertation titled '‘Culinaire vererfgoeding in Vlaanderen tussen 1945 en 2000. Een historisch-gastrolinguïstische analyse? on the 18th of September in Leuven as a part of the ICAG seminars (in Dutch). Click here orhere for more information and registration.

Professor Peter Scholliers will present the paper 'Restaurants économiques de Bruxelles: la bourgeoisie affamée dans un pays occupé, 1914-1918' at the Journées d'études: Manger et Boire entre 1914 & 1918 at Dijon. Click here for more information (French)

  • 27.03.2014 - Call for Papers 2015 Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food (16.01.2015-17.01.2015)

New Call for Papers for the 2015 Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food. The central topic for this years edition will be Food, Hunger and Conflict. The Amsterdam Symposium is the result of a collaboration between the Special Collections, UvA, the Institute of Culture and History, UvA, and the research group on Social & Cultural Food Studies (FOST). Deadline for abstracts is the 15th of May 2014. Click here for more information.

  • 13.03.2014 - FOST presentations.

The next round of FOST presentation will be held on Thursday the 13th of March, 2014 (starting at 15.30). Presentations will be held by Filip Degreef (Food Quality, Safety, and Trust since 1950: Societal Controversy and Biotechnological Challenges) and Jon Verriet (Canned food, mediation and food pratices). Contact Filip Degreef for more information.

  • 17.01.2014 - Cooking Up the Low Countries: Visual and Textual Representations of Culinary Cultures in Belgium and the Netherlands

On the 17th of January 2014 the Special Collections of the Universiteit van Amsterdam and FOST are organizing the first edition of The Amsterdam Symposium on the History of Food in the Low Countries. This year's topic is "Cooking up the Low Countries: Visual and Textual Representations of Culinary Culture in Belgium and the Netherlands (16th-21st century)". Registration is open until the 1st of December 2013.

  • 12.11.2013 - Doctoral thesis

On the 12th of November 2013 Maureen Duru is defending her PhD thesis entitled 'Identities in diaspora. Food traditions and innovations of Nigerians in Belgium, 1970 to the present'. Click here for more information.

  • 17.05.2013 - International Colloquium on Disgust: History, Language, Politics and Aesthetics of a Complex Emotion - Histoire, Langage, Politique et Esthétique d'une Emotion Plurielle.

From the 22nd until the 24th of May the Centre Interdisciplinaire de Poétique Appliquée(CIPA) of the University of Liège will organise an international and interdisciplinary colloquium on Disgust. Click here for mor information.

  • 04.04.2013 - Food and hospitals: an historical perspective

On the 26th and 27th of April 2013 the University of Birmingham, in collaboration with FOST, organizes the international conference 'Food and hospitals: an historical perspective' in Brussels. Click here for more information.

  • 04.04.2013 - Masterclass Loïc Bienassis

On the 31st of May, 2013 FOST and FARO are hosting a masterclass with Loïc Bienassis titled "Thinking heritagization. The example of the culinary". Click here and here for more information.

  • 09.11.2012 - Interview with chef Dominique Michou

On Friday, November 9th, 2012 FOST and FARO welcome Dominique Michou, Belgian chef at L'Alban Chambon (Hotel Métropole) for a talk on the current gastronomic cuisine, his education and the influence it has had on him and his career.

Practical information:

November 9th, 2012: 14u-16u

FARO, Priemstraat 51, 1000 Brussel

Registration: €3, free for students

  • 12.10.2012 - Masterclass Hervé This

On Friday the 12th of October, 2012 Prof. Dr. Hervé This - in collaboration with FOST and FARO - is giving a Masterclass on molecular gastronomy entitled “Que mangerons-nous demain? Comment la discipline scientifique qu’est la gastronomie moléculaire conduit à des propositions de réponses.” Click here for more information.

  • 09-10.02.2012 - FOST Conference

On February 9 and 10, 2012, FOST will be organizing a conference entitled 'A Taste of Home. Food, identity, place and memory in Europe from a historical perspective (19th-20th centuries)'. Please find the Call for Papers here.

  • 16-17.12.2011 - FOST Conference

On December 16 and 17, 2011, FOST will be organizing the conference 'Labour, Labour Relations and Occupational Identities in Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes (18th-20th centuries)'. More information can be found here.

  • 1.12.2011 - Lecture Karen Arijs

From December 1st until December 3rd, the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and the Social Sciences (NIAS) organises a colloquium on "The Construction of Local Identities through Culture and Language in the Dutch Province of Limburg". Karen Arijs will present a paper titled "Public celebrations and (food) consumption as proxy for the study of identity in cross-border-region Limburg: a suitable approach?" Click here for more information.

  • 13-16.09.2011 - Lecture Anneke Geyzen

From 13 until 16 September 2011, the International Commission for Research into European Food History (ICREFH) organises its 12th colloquium. This year's theme focuses on 'The History of the European Food Industry in the nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth century'. FOST member Anneke Geyzen will present a paper titled 'The representation of food preservation types in Flemish women's magazines, 1945-1960'.

Click here for Anneke's presentation.

Click here for the conference programme.

  • 13.09.2011 - Lecture Nathalie Parys

On Tuesday, September 13th, the Centre for Material Texts in Cambridge will be hosting a workshop entitled Eating Words: Text, Image, Food. FOST member Nathalie Parys will talk about 'Using cookbooks as historical sources: obstacles and challenges'.

Click here for Nathalie's presentation.

Click here for the workshop's programme.

  • 09.09.2011 - Ph.D. defense Nelleke Teughels

On Friday, September 9th (3pm) FOST member Nelleke Teughels' Ph.D. defense will take place. Her dissertation is entitled: 'Smaakvolle boodschappen: archeologisch onderzoek naar iconografie, materiële cultuur en identiteit in de Belgische kleinhandel, ca. 1870-1940'.

Click here to see the invitation.

Please rsvp via .

  • 02.08.2011 - Lecture Sarah Daniels

On August 2nd, Sarah Daniels will talk at the IATUR Conference. Her lecture is entitled: 'More than just preparing a meal? Concerning the meanings of cooking'.

  • 16.06.2011 - Lecture Anneke Geyzen

At the conference 'Food and Drink: their Social, Political and Cultural Histories' in Preston (UK), Anneke Geyzen will talk about 'What's in a name? Recipes and geographical connotations in postwar Flanders'.

  • 01.05.2011 - Lecture Peter Scholliers

On May 1st, the 'Day of Cultural Heritage' will take place. FOST member Peter Schollierswill talk about 'Bettelman en pain à la grecque: armeluiskost op rijke tafels'.

For more information and the complete programme, click here.

  • 08.04.2011 - Lecture Karen Arijs

On April 8th, FOST member Karen Arijs will talk about the construction of identity in Belgian and Dutch Limburg (19th and 20th centuries).

Click here for more information.

  • 07.02.2011 - Masterclass FOST

On 7 February 2011, dr. Alain Drouard and FOST will organize a masterclass titled'Histoires des cuisiniers et de la cuisine en France (XIXe - XXe siècles)'.

  • Practical information: 3-6pm, room 5C402 (professors' room at the Faculty of Arts - VUB).
  • Dr. Drouard is directeur de recherche CNRS, associated with the Centre Roland Mousnier (Paris) and chairman of ICREFH (International Commission for Research into European Food History). He has published several books amongst which Histoire des cuisiniers en France (XIXe - XXe siècle) (Paris: CNRS Editions, 2004, herdruk 2007), Les Français et la table: Alimentation, cuisine et gastronomie du Moyen Age à nos jours (Paris: Ellipses, 2005), and together with Jean-Pierre Williot, he has edited Histoire des innovations alimentaires, XIXe et XXe siècles (Paris: L’Harmattan, 2007). 
    Dr. Drouard is one of the few historians in the world who has researched labour market, hierarchies, migrations, unions and strikes of personnel working in hotels, cafés and restaurants.
  • The masterclass entails three parts: a lecture by A. Drouard (in French), a practical excercise (based on a text or photo) and a debate (in French or English).
  • 10-11.12.2010 - FOST Colloquium

On 10 and 11 December 2010, FOST will organize its yearly colloquium. This year the theme is "Food: Convergence and Divergence in Europe since 1800 (Cuisine of Elites, Bourgeois, and Middle Classes)."

Click here for more information.

To register, please click here.

  • 30.11.2010 - Lecture about eating habits in Roman Antiquity

On November 30, professor Paul Erdkamp will be giving a lecture about eating habits in Roman Antiquity.

More information can be found here.

  • 12.11.2010 and 16.11.2010 - FOST during the Week of Taste

This year too, FOST will be participating in the Week of Taste in Flanders (November 11-November 21). On November 12, Patricks Keuken in Ninove will be the stage for several lectures about 'forgotten vergetables'. Lecturers are Anneke Geyzen, Olivier de Maret,Nelleke Teughels and Daniëlle De Vooght. More information can be found here. On November 16, Peter Scholliers will be taking about 'Belgian cuisine' in Aalst. More information can be found here.

Registration is necessary. Please refer to the previously mentioned websites.

  • 04.06.2010 - FOST Masterclass

On June 4th, the annual FOST Masterclass will take place. Master@Work is Allen Weiss. He will talk about 'Food, Memory, Heritage'. To subscribe, please visit the FARO-website.

  • 22.04.2010 - FOST Ph.D. defense

On April 22, 2010, FOST member Daniëlle De Vooght will defend her dissertation entitled 'Display at the Dining Table? Culinary Networks of Power at the Belgian Royal Court of the Nineteenth Century'. This research is a part of the FOST research programme on convergence and divergence in European food habits.

  • 06.03.2006 - FOST goes online (in English)

As of today, the FOST website is also available in English!!! This website aims to provide information about social and cultural food studies, on both a national and international level. You can get to know the FOST members, learn about FOST research activities, read about publications and take a look at interesting food websites.
So be our guest, and take a look around...

Associations, research centres, institutions

Online bibliography