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Could a People’s Food Policy plug Australia’s “policy vacuum”?

17th July 2017

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Sharon Friel

Sharon joined RegNet as Professor of Health Equity in May 2014 and became Director in July 2014. She also serves as the Director of the Menzies Centre for Health Policy at the Australian National University.

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This article first appeared on Croakey Blog on July 14 2017

As Britain prepares for Brexit to disrupt many of its established trade networks, a coalition of more than 80 English food and farming organisations has launched A People’s Food Policy.

The group described their manifesto, developed after 18 months of consultation with “grassroots organisations”, NGOs, trade unions, community projects, small businesses and individuals, as “a comprehensive proposal for a more just and sustainable food system… rooted in the lived experiences and needs of the people most affected by the failures in the current food system”.

Commenting on this development, Sharon Friel told Croakey that “all policy should be people policy”. She said people respond to their food environments, which are shaped by policy across a number of sectors, including trade, health, agriculture, planning and social factors.

“A people’s food policy would enable the expression of people’s agency, empowering citizens to shape policy so that it addresses their needs (and not just profits!) and also the implementation of action that acts fairly,” she said.

You can read the full article here.

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet