Your World Food Day reading list
It's World Food Day! Why not educate yourself on the many facets of food research, including poverty, sustainability and the roles cities can play in food production? All titles can be downloaded for free.
The integration of food into urban planning is a crucial and emerging topic. Urban planners, alongside the local and regional authorities that have traditionally been less engaged in food-related issues, are now asked to take a central and active part in understanding how food is produced, processed, packaged, transported, marketed, consumed, disposed of and recycled in our cities.
While there is a growing body of literature on the topic, the issue of planning cities in such a way they will increase food security and nutrition, not only for the affluent sections of society but primarily for the poor, is much less discussed, and much less informed by practices.
Integrating Food into Urban Planning is a collaboration between the Bartlett Development Planning Unit at UCL and the Food Agricultural Organisation, aims to fill this gap by putting more than 20 city-based experiences in perspective, including studies from Toronto, New York City, Portland and Providence in North America; Milan in Europe and Cape Town in Africa; Belo Horizonte and Lima in South America; and, in Asia, Bangkok and Tokyo.
By studying and comparing cities of different sizes, from both the Global North and South, in developed and developing regions, the contributors collectively argue for the importance and circulation of global knowledge rooted in local food planning practices, programmes and policies.
Faced with a global threat to food security, it is perfectly possible that society will respond, not by a dystopian disintegration, but rather by reasserting co-operative traditions. This book, by a leading expert in urban agriculture, offers a genuine solution to today’s global food crisis. By contributing more to feeding themselves, cities can allow breathing space for the rural sector to convert to more organic sustainable approaches.
Sustainable Food Systems connects with current debates about agroecology and food sovereignty, asks key questions, and proposes lines of future research. He suggests that today’s food insecurity – manifested in a regime of wildly fluctuating prices – reflects not just temporary stresses in the existing mode of production, but more profoundly the troubled process of generating a new one. He argues that the solution cannot be implemented at a merely technical or political level: the force of change can only be driven by the kind of social movements which are now daring to challenge the existing unsustainable order.
Drawing on both his academic research and teaching, and 15 years’ experience as a practicing urban farmer, Biel brings a unique interdisciplinary approach to this key global issue, creating a dialogue between the physical and social sciences