This week: The rise of Australia’s food movement, how drought impacts the insect kingdom, not enough fruits and veggies are grown to healthily feed the planet and Regenerative Sourcing Verification hits U.S. shelves.
Working to reclaim and rebuild our food systems from the ground up
Separated more by time and capacity than ideological approach, groups and communities working for a better food system are mobilising across Australia. Our food system is ripe for repairing, reclaiming and revisioning.
Drought makes Aussie bees weak at the knees
While the word drought conjures images of cattle skulls and withered crops, few consider the effect a drought can have upon the insect kingdom.
Victoria’s biggest solar farm under construction amid debate over lost agricultural land
As work begins on Victoria’s biggest solar farm project, in the Mallee district in the north-west of the state, there is growing concern over the future of prime agricultural land in the heart of the country’s food bowl.
Protecting Australia’s diverse soils and landscapes
Sustainable Food Trust
Australia’s soils are one of its most valuable natural assets, critical to sustainable food production, biodiversity conservation, water quality and human health – but they are also among the most degraded, nutrient poor and unproductive in the world.
Opinion: New EU rules will force Australian farmers to choose between treatment or trade
New EU rules insist that veterinary medicines cannot be used any differently outside of the bloc if farmers want to export their produce to European countries – even if it is legally compliant with their native regulations.
Soy destruction in Argentina leads straight to our dinner plates
Argentina’s Gran Chaco forest is being razed for soya, ending up in Europe as animal feed, and on our plates. It’s the backbone of Argentina’s fragile economy, but has come at a price for the indigenous people who live there.
Not Enough Fruits, Vegetables Grown to Feed the Planet, Study Reveals
University of Guelph
If everyone on the planet wanted to eat a healthy diet, there wouldn’t be enough fruit and vegetables to go around, according to a new University of Guelph study.
Half the population of Yemen at risk of famine: UN emergency relief chief
Around 14 million people in Yemen, or half the total population of the country, are facing “pre-famine conditions,” said the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, in a briefing to the Security Council.
Regenerative Sourcing Verification hits the shelves with ‘Epic’ product
A product from Epic Provisions is the first in the world to carry the Land to Market Ecological Outcome Verification (EOV) seal for sustainable sourcing. Developed by The Savory Institute, Land to Market is a program to verify regenerative sourcing for the food and fibre industries.
Series: America cannot eat without immigrant food workers. These are their stories.
New Food Economy
The New Food Economy is launching “The Hands that Feed Us,” a series telling the stories of immigrant food workers in their own words – because the true story of America’s food cannot be told without the stories of immigrants.
Photo courtesy of Future Feeders
This week: ⅕ Australian honey samples prove fake, France adopts a “field-to-fork” law, Brazil protects 13,000 square kms from destructive bottom trawling and global indigenous peoples make their voices heard at the Global Climate Action Summit.
Almost One in Five Australian Honey Samples Found to Be Fake
Almost one in five Australian honey samples, including some expensive boutique honey, are fake, according to a ground-breaking study that tested samples of local and international branded honey.
Backpackers Share Australian Farm Horror Stories
In order to stay a second year in Australia, backpackers need to do 88 days of work either on a farm, in construction or in mining. Some have horror stories to tell.
Small Farm Success Is Hard Yakka for Beginners, but It Has Its Own Rewards
Anna Featherstone and her husband Andrew Campbell have published two books, Honey Farm Dreaming, a very personal memoir of anecdotes and observations, and Small Farm Success Australia, a combination business and lifestyle guide, that reflect on their decade-plus experience as small farmers.
Event: Women in Environmental Activism: Conversations and Networking, Canberra
Join Women’s Environmental Leadership Australia – WELA and guest speakers Julie Armstrong and Phoebe Howe for a night of insights into their experience of being a woman in the environmental activism sphere.
France Adopts Food Bill, Retailer Says Will Lead to Price Rise
France’s parliament gave final approval this week to a “field-to-fork” law aimed at raising farmers’ income, improving food quality and fighting waste, but opponents say it will push up consumer prices and only benefit retailers.
Victory in Brazil Protects 13,000 Square Kilometers from Destructive Bottom Trawling
The state of Rio Grande do Sul has passed a law to ban bottom trawling in state waters. These new protections extend along the entire length of the state’s 620-kilometre coast and cover a distance out to 12 nautical miles (22.2 km) from shore.
Cleaning up Toxic Soils in China: A Trillion-Dollar Question
International Institute for Sustainable Development
China has enacted a Soil Pollution Prevention and Control Law outlining preventative measures government authorities and land users should take to protect soil from future pollution.
With sows producing 23 piglets a year on average, intensive farming is called into question over the rise in animals suffering prolapse.
‘Guardians of the Forest:’ Indigenous Peoples Come Together to Assert Role in Climate Stability
A half mile from the din of the Global Climate Action Summit and its 4,000 attendees in San Francisco, indigenous peoples from around the world came together in a small space for a summit of their own.
The Food For Thought and Action series is proud to present its Canberra public panel, Bringing Together People, Food and Planet: a better food system (get tickets here).
Join us for an evening of thought-provoking discussion with Lyneham Commons, Dr Charles Massy and Dr Eric Holt-Gimenez.
You may have heard people say “our food system is broken”. But is it? Or is it, in fact, performing entirely to specifications – albeit at great environmental, social and cultural cost?
Hear interesting perspectives at the local, national and international level about a new future for food and farming, challenging the assumptions and models of the ‘industrial’ food system.
On Thursday 18 October 2018 at 7:00pm
Where: Renewables Innovation Hub
19-23 Moore St, Turner, ACT 2602
Photo thanks to Wynlen House Urban Micro Farm, Braidwood
This week: Aussie farmers call for an overhaul of drought policy, Switzerland leads the way in first constitutional food sovereignty vote, Kenyan government champions women-owned agricultural businesses and new Greenpeace USA report examines sustainability and human rights in the seafood industry.
Drought Policy Reform Should Focus On Preparing For Drier Climate, Farmers Say
The agriculture sector is calling for an overhaul of drought policy that factors in a changing climate and ways to help farmers plan for and manage future dry periods.
ACCC Provides Collective Bargaining Exemption For Agriculture
Farm Online National
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission wants feedback on a proposal that could reduce costs and speed up the approvals process for agricultural groups that want to increase their bargaining power with business entities up the supply chain.
Feral Camels Invade WA Coastal Crops in a Strange Appearance Signalling a Dry Nullarbor
Grain growers in the south-east coastal district of Western Australia were shocked by the sight of feral camels wandering through their crops.
A New Dimension to Marine Restoration: 3D Printing Coral Reefs
Australian group Reef Design Labs submerged a 3D-printed artificial coral reef earlier this month in the Maldives, with the hope that this advanced engineering method will help coral regeneration efforts.
Environmentally Friendly Farming Practices Used By Nearly One-third of World’s Farms
Nearly one-third of the world’s farms have adopted more environmentally friendly practices while continuing to be productive, according to a global assessment by 17 scientists in five countries.
‘Like Nicotine’: Bees Develop Preference For Pesticides, Study Shows
Bumblebees acquire a taste for pesticide-laced food that can be compared to nicotine addiction in smokers, say scientists.
It Is Time To Declare the Food Sovereignty of the Citizens of Switzerland
As the result of an impressive campaign led by the agricultural union Uniterre and members of the Alliance for Food Sovereignty, on September 23rd, 2018, Swiss citizens will be able to vote for the inclusion of food sovereignty in the Swiss constitution.
Unleashing the Power of Women Farmers in Africa, and Beyond
The government of Kenya recently launched an affirmative action policy to preferentially award 30 per cent of government ministry tenders to women-owned businesses in each sector, including agriculture.
Report: Carting Away the Oceans
Greenpeace USA examines sustainable seafood and human rights abuses in the seafood industry in the tenth edition of a report titled, ‘Carting Away the Oceans.’ The report features a scorecard for major retailers’ sustainability practices in categories of policy, initiatives, labelling and transparency and inventory.