Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics | VOL. 27

Food Security: One of a Number of ‘Securities’ We Need for a Full Life: An Australian Perspective

Publication Date Jan 30, 2014


Although agriculture in Australia is very productive, the current food supply systems in Australia fail to deliver healthy diets to all Australians and fail to protect the natural resources on which they depend. The operation of the food systems creates ‘collateral damage’ to the natural environment including biodiversity loss. In coming decades, Australia’s food supply systems will be increasingly challenged by resource price inflation and climate change. Australia exports more than half of its current agricultural production. Government and business are aiming to substantially increase production to bolster exports. This will increase pressure on agricultural resources and exacerbate ‘collateral’ damage to the environment. The Australian public have a deep and ongoing interest in a very wide range of issues associated with the food systems including the environment, health and sustainability. Food is something we require in order to live and a good diet is something we have to have to be healthy. For health over a life-time we need food security. However, we also require a range of other material goods and social arrangements in order to develop and flourish as human beings. And we need these other things to be secure over a life-time. Food is therefore one security among a range of other securities we need in order to flourish. The paper outlines a number of approaches, as examples, that help to identify what these other goods and arrangements might be. The approaches mentioned in this paper include human rights, national...


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