THIS PAGE IS MOVING TO SUSTAINABLE FOOD REPORTS.
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FEC Sustainable Intensification All about the term. Our view intensification.htm
Sustainable Consumption Institute Manchester University What's Cooking Arguably more than other sectors, the food system will suffer climate impacts. With elevated temperatures and a shift in water resources, farmers will need to respond to more extreme weather events and different growing conditions.
BMC The weightof Nations: An estimation of adult human biomass. Bodyweight and Environmental Impact . If all countries had the BMI distribution of the USA, the increase in human biomass of 58 million tonnes would be equivalent in mass to an extra 935 million people of average body mass,
Internatial Institute Environment Development's Michael Pimbert in Putting citizens at the heart of food system governance says: "Establishing inclusive governance of food systems - where farmers and other citizens play an active role in designing and implementing food and agricultural policies - is not just a matter of equity or social justice. Evidence shows that it can also lead to more sustainable livelihoods and environments."
Pesticides Forum Annual Report 2011 says "Work in 2012 will focus on the key requirement in the directive on sustainable use, for the development of a National Action Plan (NAP) to reduce the risks and impacts of pesticide use and encouraging the development of integrated and alternative approaches. The existing UK Pesticides Strategy provides a good basis on which to develop the UK NAP."
The British Retail Consortium state "that the much-heralded Groceries Code Adjudicator will only cover supermarkets' relationships with direct suppliers. 'It is a myth that it will make any difference to the majority of farmers'. The Adjudicator will make no difference to most farmers because few deal directly with supermarkets. Very few farmers have a direct contractual relationship with retailers. Farmers generally supply intermediaries, such as processors and dairies, who then supply retailers and other parts of the food sector such as catering and manufacturing."
National Trust Research into Beef Production found that "the carbon sequestration contribution of well-managed grass pasture on the less intensive systems reduced net emissions by up to 94 per cent, even resulting in a carbon 'net gain' in upland areas."
Environmental Audit Committee report on Sustainable Food warns: "The Government must develop a joined-up strategy to change the UK's unhealthy and environmentally damaging food system, as fears mount about global food security".
Joseph Rowntree' Foundation's Experiences of forced Labour in the UK Food Industry asks:"What are migrant workers' experiences of forced labour and exploitation in the UK food industry?"
Nature's Misplaced Protest says of a proposed destruction of a GM trial at Rothamsted: "Justifiable unease over the way in which GM-led business models would hand entire food chains to large agrochemical companies found a popular proxy in less-realistic concerns over the possible health impacts of the new technology." See Scientific American below (March) for details of trial, Scientists @ Rothamsted Beddington, & Take the Flour Back re protest, aristocratic farmer charged with criminal damage of the crop, what some Rothamsted scientists at Sense about Science, and what we think of GM in general.
G8 Summit at Camp David "The G8 leaders have already agreed to do something about global hunger. Now is the time to renew and fulfill those commitments, making life-saving investments in solutions that will improve food security and reduce child malnutrition." Details
Soil Association Just say N2O asks "Of course, all agricultural systems need a supply of nitrogen to replenish that lost when crops are harvested, and some loss of nitrogen is inevitable. So how should we best deal with the environmental consequences, N2O emissions and future food insecurity caused by our century-long love affair with manufactured nitrogen?"
UN Forum on Sustainabiity Standards to be launched soon. It is "Intended to help developing countries cope with and even capitalize on trend towards voluntary social, environmental, and other voluntary sustainability standards".
School Food Trust Jamie calls for Academies to follow the national food standards for Schools. "We believe all school should use the standards – because the evidence shows they improve the food being offered in canteens, and the food that children actually eat at school. And when children eat better, they do better – so it’s a no-brainer."
GreenBiz.com says Walmart creeps forward on its sustainability goals. "Walmart is making progress, but still has a long way to go to reach its high sustainability goals, according to its Global Responsibility Report released Monday. The company in 2005 set goals of being totally supplied with renewable energy, having zero waste and selling products that sustain people and the environment."
Word of Mouth Blog Eat the Food Packaging says 'that we may have a "psychological barrier" to eating the box, no matter how tasty they try to tell us it is'. (food, drink and packaging waste in the UK supply chain is about 6.6m tonnes a year and costs £5bn)
Farmers Weekly asks What is sustainable agriculture? - 'what does it actually mean and how are UK producers supposed to become more sustainable?'
Academy of Royal Medical College Medical profession united to defuse obesity time-bomb has come together to launch a campaign on what it claims is the single greatest public health threat in the UK - rising levels of child and adult obesity, because "we recognise the huge crisis waiting to happen and believe that current strategies to reduce obesity are failing to have a significant impact."
IATP Exporting Obesity on US trade and Mexican obesity says: "Food environments are created beyond the point of sale. They start much further upstream, on the land. Here, two other major drivers of the food environment come into the picture: the industrialization of agriculture, and trade and investment rules that extend it to developing countries."
Food Ethics Council Special issue 'Soil: A fragile foundation' believes "that there needs to be an urgent debate about the state of our soils, both in the UK and around the world. Now is the time to take soil seriously. It is a living entity that is vital for supporting all life on our planet. We have a duty – for now and for future generations – to respect, nurture and protect it." See Analysis 'Soil - Dont treat it like dirt'. This was a chance for CC to launch his new site www.soilanimals.com, that asks 'when did the soil evolve?' You can go and add comments, photos & docs.
Science magazine Field Research on Bees raises concern about low-dose pesticides. Goulson finds "in bumble bees, exposure to a 'nicotinoid' insecticide leads to a dramatic loss of queens and could help explain the insects' decline. while Mickal Henry says that "In honey bees, another nicotinoid interferes with the foragers' ability to find their way back to the hive." BBC Report We say the ACP should review the present assessment as these findings could be significant. DEFRA Chief Scientist must have heard and says "we need careful analysis...and assessment".
Scientific American says "Field trials are under way in England of a genetically modified (GM) wheat that strikes fear into aphids and attracts a deadly predator to devour them, providing an alternative to the insecticides now used to control the crop pest." DEFRA details. Rothamsted Update. GM Freeze Objections. GMSAFOOD, an EU funded programme which uses new research techniques in post market monitoring (PMM), stated at it's recent Conference "To date, no health risks have been definitively linked to any novel food". They fed 2 sorts of GM food to a variety of animals throughout their lives and found only one effect: a gene from a bean that went into a pea was allergenic to some, but may have been allergenic in the bean too. More on DIY GM
Farming Online Greek 'Potato Revolution' says farmers and activists from Northern Greece have banded together to provide a solution to the grim economic situation which benefits the hard-hit producers and their customers alike.
BBC Panorama The Money Farmers "Six-figure subsidies meant to help struggling farmers are being paid out to some of Britain's richest landowners, BBC Panorama has found. Recipients of the EU subsidy include the Queen and the Duke of Westminster." In the programme (19 mins), it says that he - the richest man in Britain, got £6m in farm subsidies in last 10 years. And over his vast land areas, all he does is grow grouse.
UN's DeShutter's latest report says "we must tackle the systemic problems that generate poor nutrition in all its forms" and spells out 5 prioirity actions.
GRAIN provides new data set of over 400 large scale landgrabs "by foreign investors for the production of food crops. The cases cover nearly 35 million hectares of land in 66 countries". Details at www.farmlandgrab.org. See Agricultural Investment Summit June London 2012
Government Response to Macdonald Task Force recommendations regarding 'Red Tape' in Farming "fully accepts the principle of reducing the inspection burden upon those who have a strong track record of reliability and adherence to standards. This risk-based approach to inspections is happening now in a number of inspection regimes". They suggest it be applied to Gangmasters Licensing Authority and Pesticides control, among others.
Food Growing in Schools Task Force Report "wanted to demonstrate the impact food growing in schools can have, explain why it is so powerful as a catalyst for change, and understand what must be done to ensure that every child and young person, school and community, experiences the potential benefits of participation."
CEH The Robustness and Restoration of a Network of Ecological Networks says that "plants often regarded as common weeds such as thistles, buttercups and clover could be critical for safeguarding fragile food webs on UK farms, according to new research published in Science this week." And dont forget - weeds are also little 'carbon capture and storage (CSS)' units
Schuttelaar & Partners Future of Food says there is "a clear indication of the challenges and opportunities we face in making the global food chain more sustainable and that the time has come to deal with them directly. As the economies of countries such as China, India and Brazil are set to play an extremely important role in this area, the seminar focused on their roles and responsibilities"
Nature 'Solutions for a cultivated planet' says: "tremendous progress could be made by halting agricultural expansion, closing ‘yield gaps’ on underperforming lands, increasing cropping efficiency, shifting diets and reducing waste. Together, these strategies could double food production while greatly reducing the environmental impacts of agriculture." and that "The ‘Goldilocks’ problem of nutrients (that is, there are many regions with too much or too little fertilizer but few that are ‘just right’) is one of the key issues facing agriculture today"
OECD Obesity Update says that "Many governments stepped up efforts to tackle the root causes of obesity, embracing increasingly comprehensive strategies and involving communities and key stakeholders. There has been a new interest in the use of taxes on foods rich in fat and sugar, with several governments (e.g. Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary) passing new legislation in 2011".Obesity rates in UK highest in Europe
Economist The Nutrition puzzle says: "Malnutrition is attracting attention now because the damage it does has only recently begun to sink in. The misery of lacking caloriesbloated bellies, wasted limbs, the lethargy of famineis easy to spot. So are the disastrous effects of obesity. By contrast, the ravages of inadequate nutrition are veiled, but no less dreadful."
Public Health Assocaition of Australian Future for Food Healthy Sustainable Fair says " A safe, nutritious, affordable, secure and environmentally sustainable food system that is accessible to all Australians for health, wellbeing and prosperity now and into the future (2011) and that "The Australian food and nutrition system remains in crisis with little real progress in reducing problems related to food choice." (2012)
UN Rio+20 The Future We Want - Zero draft of the outcome document says "We reaffirm the right to food and call upon all States to prioritize sustainable intensification of food production through increased investment in local food production, improved access to local and global agri-food markets, and reduced waste throughout the supply chain, with special attention to women, smallholders, youth, and indigenous farmers. We are committed to ensuring proper nutrition for our people." (Para 64) See oOur view on 'Sustainable Intensification' and more local food production in 'Ways of Seeing"
BBSRC £7 (sic) public funding ro deliver better fruit and vegetables "can combine the scientific expertise of academic researchers with the real-world expertise of industry in the hope of delivering bigger yields of better quality fruit and veg for us all to buy"
DEFRA Food Statistics pocketbook 2011 includes: * Fruit and vegetable consumption is falling among poorer families, * Food prices rose 26% between June 2007 and June 2011 which is 2-3X more than France & Germany, * Ethical food increased by over 50% in 3 years,*food waste is down.
USDA announce $40 million to boost local food supplies will promote small business expansion and entrepreneurship opportunities by providing local businesses with access capital, technical assistance and new markets for products and services."
Food Ethics Council ChinaL Business trends, sustainability and food security shows how China takes food security very seriously and "is focussing on internal solutions, through investing in ‘green’ agriculture and food production in and around cities, as well as more controversially investing in land overseas."
Union of Concerned Scientists' Eight Ways Monsanto fails Sustainable Agriculture says: "Monsanto aggressively touts its technology as vital to achieving laudable goals such as ensuring adequate food production, responding to the challenge of global warming, and reducing agriculture's negative impacts on the environment." Does it?
UN High Level Panel on Global Sustainaibity Resilient People Resilient Planet includes Box 5 "The need for more sustainable diets. How we produce and consume food can have a significant impact on sustainable development."
Solutions The Great Turnaround spells out Bhutan's proposal to the Rio +20 “to create a healthy new global economic system based on caring for nature and for each other. We’ll need new measures of progress that count the value of allour wealth—natural, social, human, and economic. And we’ll need global regulatory mechanisms to replace the institutions like the IMF and World Bank that have failed us so badly—systems of fair trade, of rewards and incentives for sustainable behaviors, of penalties for pollution and resource degradation, and of protection and support for the world’s most vulnerable peoples."
Global Forum for Food & Agriculture Food Security through Sustainable Growth "picked up on the insights acquired at the three preceding Berlin Agriculture Ministers' Summits, took note of the G20 action plan on price volatility and agriculture and formulated contributions towards a successful Rio+20 United Nations Conference in the summer of 2012."
World Economic Forum (Davos) Putting the New Vision for Agriculture into Action is led by "26 global Partner companies" and "sets goals of 20% improvement per decade on each of its three goals: economic growth and opportunity, food security and nutrition, and environmental sustainability. Realizing these goals on a global level will require the right combination of actions, balancing agriculture-sector growth with sustainability." But still leaves women doing the backbreaking work
DEFRA in Driving Export Growth in Food, Fqrming & Drink says the sector has "has a key role in driving strong and sustainable growth, particularly through exploiting overseas markets. ...Exports in the agri-food sector have been growing steadily, with 2010 seeing the sixth consecutive year of growth in value to £16 billion." This is about the same amount as UK imports of food we could grow ourselves. What is the single most importnt food and drinl export iom ,in oney terms? (Answer)
IATP Resolving the Food Crisiis says: "The recent food-price crisis exposed the fragility of the global food system. A paradigm shift is underway, caused by the deepening integration of agricultural, energy and financial markets in a resource-constrained world made more vulnerable by climate change. Powerful multinational firms dominate these markets."
ETC group The Greed Revolution say "Faced with stagnant population growth and volatile commodity prices in the North, multinationals are sowing and selling South and, for the first time, taking notice of the multilateral institutions that have been there for half a century"
Jose da Sliva, new Head of FAO, in der Speigel Specualtion is an important cause of high prices says "One of the few good things about rising food prices is that they have created a global awareness of how fundamentally important it is to feed the world -- the other is that higher prices give farmers incentives to produce. Put differently, hunger is finally being given top priority. We should and can take advantage of this, by coming up with a global strategy for food security....We need sustainable agriculture tailored to regional conditions. ....those who produce regionally are less dependent on currency fluctuations, speculation, transport costs and even climate-related disasters."
IIED, cirad & International Land Coalition in Land Rights and the rush for land say: "with the intensification of commercial pressures on land since the food price crisis of 2008, processes have entered a new phase. It is in this sense that this report speaks of a new “land rush”.
Nutrition Bulletin Special Issue: Achieving a healthy sustainable diet: an integrated approach. is a series pf parpers, one by the editor which says: " the challenge ahead is to identify dietary patterns that provide us with the many nutrients we need for health, in appropriate amounts, that are also equitable, affordable and sustainable. This paper explores the challenges for the global food system and public health in providing a healthy diet for the expanding population, how UK diets may need to change to ensure they are both healthy and sustainable, and the challenges of changing people's diets "
UK's single most impoirtant food and drink export is Scotch Whisky 10%)
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