Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Food and agriculture policy

18 January 2016

The director of nutrition at the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Anna Lartey warns that while addressing problems with undernutrition has long been the main focus of African countries and aid organisations, the increasing challenges related to overweight and obesity are not being given sufficient attention.

18 January 2016

The FCRN has previously reported on the controversy over the development of the 2015 US dietary guidelines, and in particular the vociferous debate as to whether they should include sustainability considerations.

18 January 2016

This paper published in Marketing Science finds that small price differences at the point of purchase (a so-called excise tax) can be highly effective in shifting consumer demand from high calorie to healthier low calorie alternatives.

17 December 2015

This report from the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), reports that there has been 'steady' progress on certified sustainable palm oil use ­ with palm oil imports 72% sustainable in 2014 - up from 55% in 2013.

17 December 2015

A new report by the Commons’ Health Committee discusses the potential of implementing a sugary drink tax as a way of combating child obesity. Sugary drinks are the largest sources of sugar for 11 to 18 year-olds and there is increasing concern over the effects of sugar on people’s health, particularly the health of children and teenagers.

2 December 2015

Over 75 top nutrition scientists and medical experts gathered in Boston in October 2015 at the Finding Common Ground Conference, convened by the non-profit Oldways to try to agree on principles for a healthy diet (primarily aimed at a U.S. audience). Oldways is a food and nutrition education organization aiming to inspire healthy eating through cultural food traditions and lifestyles. The meeting was attended by a diverse range of experts, many vocal proponents of particular types of diets (vegan, paleo, low-fat, Mediterranean etc.) and is described to have led to some heated debates.

2 December 2015

The local food movement is one of the most active of current civil engagement social movements. This work presents primary evidence from over 900 documents, interviews, and participant observations, and provides the first descriptive history of local food movement national policy achievements in the US, from 1976 to 2013, and in the UK, from 1991 to 2013, together with reviews of both the American and British local food movements. It provides a US-UK comparative context, significantly updating earlier comparisons of American, British and European farm and rural policies.

2 December 2015

This discussion paper entitled The Triangle: The Evolution and Future of Industrial Animal Agriculture in the U.S., China, and Brazil provides an analysis of the modern livestock industry and of so called factory farming. The paper focuses on the connections between the three most important countries in today´s meat and feed industries: the United States, China, and Brazil. The underlying emphasis of the paper is that as living standards improve in emerging economies, rising consumption of animal products is one of the factors fuelling the expansion of Western-style, large-scale, intensive animal farming and feed crop monoculture.

2 December 2015

Reducing global meat consumption will be critical to keeping global warming below the ‘danger level’ of two degrees Celsius, the main goal of the 2015 climate negotiations in Paris, according to this new report by Chatham House.

16 November 2015

In this paper researchers recommend taking a broader "systems" approach to food policy in order to tackle public health issues as far-ranging as climate change and antibiotic use in food animal production. Three examples are given of a food systems approach to food policy: farm-to-school programs, incorporating sustainability into the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and antibiotic use in food animal production.

9 November 2015

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.

9 November 2015

In this article in The Conversation Tim Lang discusses two recent reports that have been published discussing food poverty and food banks in Britain.

30 October 2015

The EAT initiative in collaboration with the think tank and consultancy Sustainia has released a new publication EAT in Sustainia, discussing the global food system and the challenges, opportunities and solutions we have to understand in relation to the future of food, health and our environment.

9 October 2015

This International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) report looks into the dilemma facing developing countries and emerging economies in deciding whether they should favour local over global food chains.

Using case studies from Senegal and Peru this paper shows a new and complex reality that challenges ideological views about re-localising food production and consumption. It analyses national policies and food chain practices of increasingly globalised markets, and shows that in both countries local food chains are complementary rather than an alternative to imported food.

9 October 2015

It has been announced that the U.S. will not be incorporating sustainability into the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans (which are updated every five years). According to a blog-post written by Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Secretary of Health and Human Services  (HHS Secretary) and Tom Vilsack, Department of Agriculture USDA Secretary, the US government does “not believe that the 2015 DGAs are the appropriate vehicle for this important policy conversation about sustainability.” The two argue that although the final recommendations are still being drafted, the final guidelines should remain within the mandate in the 1990 National Nutrition Monitoring and Related Research Act (NNMRRA);  to provide “nutritional and dietary information and guidelines”… “based on the preponderance of the scientific and medical knowledge.”

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