Knowledge for better food systems

Food Wars - The Global Battle for Mouths, Minds and Markets, 2nd Edition, By Tim Lang and Michael Heasman

In the years since publication of the first edition of “Food Wars” much has happened in the world of food policy. This new edition brings these developments fully up to date within the original analytical framework of competing paradigms or worldviews shaping the direction and decision-making within food politics and policy.


The key theme of the importance of integrating human and environmental health has become even more pressing. In the first edition the authors set out and brought together the different strands of emerging agendas and competing narratives. The second edition retains the same core structure and includes updated examples, case studies and the new issues which show how these conflicting tendencies have played out in practice over recent years and what this tells us about the way the global food system is heading. Examples of key issues given increased attention include:

  • Nutrition, including the global rise in obesity, as well as chronic conditions, hunger and under-nutrition
  • The environment, particularly the challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss, water stress and food security
  • Food industry concentration and market power
  • Volatility and uncertainty over food prices and policy responses
  • Tensions over food, democracy and citizenship

Social and cultural aspects impacting food and nutrition policies.


Lang, T. and Heasman, M. (2015) Food Wars: The Global Battle for Mouths, Minds and Markets, 2nd Edition. Routledge, London and New York.

For further details see the publishers’ website here.

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While some of the food system challenges facing humanity are local, in an interconnected world, adopting a global perspective is essential. Many environmental issues, such as climate change, need supranational commitments and action to be addressed effectively. Due to ever increasing global trade flows, prices of commodities are connected through space; a drought in Romania may thus increase the price of wheat in Zimbabwe.

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