Governing Food Policy Workshop Highlights Complexity and Diversity in Food Policy

The Brighton and Sussex Universities Food Network (BSUFN) hosted a workshop on Governing Food Policy at the University of Sussex on Friday the 25th of September 2015. The workshop highlighted the complexity of food policy and the interactions between policy and governance of food within different sectors and at different scales. During the workshop it was acknowledged that there isn’t a single ‘food policy’ and this term in fact relates to numerous policies in sectors related to food.

Over 30 participants joined discussion during the workshop and heard about research being undertaken at the University of Sussex on areas related to food policy. This included ‘quick fire’ presentations on sustainability standards, international agricultural research, seed sovereignty, the role of food industry, economics and innovation, health, local food poverty, and the work of the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership.

During the workshop, kindly supported by SPRU (Science Policy Research Unit), eight people presented their work related to food policy. Researchers from SPRU, the Institute of Development Studies, and the Department of Social Work presented research which indicated the diversity of topics and sectors that constitute part of a web of different food policies. Two non-academics also presented their work on local community-based practice in the area of food policy.

The workshop saw the launch of BSUFN’s special interest group (SIG) on Food Policy and Governance. Members of the SIG and the wider Network will take the discussion during the workshop forward through additional activities, collaborations, and investigation into societal engagement with food policy.

A report on the Governing Food Policy Workshop will be made available here soon.

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