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FOOD 2030

Roberta Sonnino (Cardiff University) will be the Vice-Chair of FOOD 2030 Expert Group and act as rapporteur for the conference on “Harnessing Research and Innovation for FOOD 2030: A science-policy dialogue” that will take place in Brussels in 16th October. In this role, she will be in charge of writing a short report on the main EU R&I achievements in the area of “climate and environmental sustainability”.

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The full program and the registration tool is available on the website of the European Commission

TRANSMANGO final conference

INVITATION FINAL TRANSMANGO CONFERENCE  

We kindly invite you for the final TRANSMANGO conference, which will take place on the 28th and 29th of November in Leuven.
Registration is now open and the full program of the conference is published.

28 November 2017 : Stakeholder meeting

Meeting with local and European stakeholders that were involved in TRANSMANGO.
TRANSMANGO has built heavily on close cooperation with various actors in the food system, both at the local level and at the European level. At this pre-conference, we provide a space for our stakeholders to meet each other in an organised setting. Registration is by invitation only

29 November 2017 : Final conference

The program includes presentations of TRANSMANGO researchers, contributions from key stakeholders of the project including representatives of local initiatives, dialogue with EU stakeholders and policy makers, and award of TRANSMANGO game jam competition

Confirmed keynote speakers: Jessica Duncan (Wageningen University), Alexandre Meybeck (FAO) and Inge Van Oost (EIP AGRI)

Location: Promotiezaal KU Leuven, Naamsestraat 22, Leuven

Transmango

Development of Organic Farming in Europe at the Crossroads: Looking for the Way Forward through System Archetypes Lenses

Recently a TRANSMANGO article has been published in Sustainability. It has been written by our colleagues Natalia Brzezina and Erik Mathijs together with Katharina Biely, Birgit Kopainsky, Joost Vervoort and Ariella Helfgott.

Over the last several decades, policymakers and stakeholders in the European Union (EU) have put considerable effort into increasing the adoption of organic farming, with the overall objective of its sustainable development. However, the growth of the organic sector has come with many challenges that jeopardize its sustainability. The question then is how to move organic farming in Europe forward and at the same time capitalize on its potential contribution to sustainability? Organic farming in the EU is a highly complex and dynamic food system and as such this question cannot be answered in isolation using a one-dimensional mind-set and tools of the past.

systems-archetypes

In this paper, we use three system archetypes—Limits to Growth, Shifting the Burden and Eroding Goals—to sharpen our ability: (1) to analyze and anticipate difficulties in the development of organic farming in the EU under the current policy measures; and (2) to find effective ways to address these difficulties. A system archetype consists of a generic system structure that leads to unintended behavior over time and effective strategies for changing the structure into one that generates desirable behavior. The analysis reveals that in order to move forward, policymakers and stakeholders should reemphasize fundamental solutions rather than quick fixes that often generate unintended consequences. Specifically, Limits to Growth shows us that the leverage for moving organic farming out of the niche does not necessarily lie in increasing subsidies that push engines of growth, but rather in anticipating and managing its limits arising from, for instance, market dynamics or intrinsic environmental motivation. In turn, Shifting the Burden brings to attention how easily and unnoticeably the EU’s organic farming system can become dependent on third countries thereby undermining its own sustainability. Finally, Eroding Goals highlights that is it important to continuously improve regulatory standards based on an external frame of reference, as otherwise organic farming in the EU will continue on its trajectory towards conventionalization.

More details ? Please follow this link.

Starting up a Common Food Strategy in Europe

by : Natalia Brzezina, KU Leuven

On the 9th of February, the TRANSMANGO Consortium organized a European policy workshop entitled “Towards a Sustainable and Resilient Food and Nutrition Security in Europe (FNS)”. A number of high level experts from across different areas of the European food system gathered in Brussels to formulate building blocks of a Common Food Strategy for a more coherent landscape of EU policies allowing innovative food practices to thrive and lead to sustainable and resilient FNS. In addition with this workshop our ambition was to start up a long-term platform fostering the Common Food Strategy and offering a unique space for different EU actors to interact with social innovators throughout Europe and to work together on concrete solutions for European food system challenges.

The workshop itself was a highly interactive participatory meeting that consisted of four consecutive sessions, namely: (1) formulation of recommendations to tackle food system challenges in a coherent way, (2) examination of the recommendations in terms of impact on local practices and confirmation with their design principles and (3) check of the robustness of the recommendations the eight TRANSMANGO scenarios at the European level. Continue reading “Starting up a Common Food Strategy in Europe”

Promising insights into local pathways to food and nutrition security

A major part of the TRANSMANGO project, was the interrogation of locally enacted pathways to address food system vulnerabilities and ensure food and nutrition security. Although food system vulnerabilities have been subject to a variety of global and national interventions, programmes and policies, these have not been able to fully address these challenges.

The starting point for WP6 was the assumption that food systems cannot be understood as uniform. ‘Local’ actors too attempt to address food system vulnerabilities within their locality and in doing so may offer promising and resilient practices. The recently published local food and nutrition security (FNS) pathways reports showcase a rich diversity of practices found at the local level and can serve as insights for policy-makers at EU and local level. The cases have been synthesised in D6.4.

Continue reading “Promising insights into local pathways to food and nutrition security”

A food dystopia: Is Britain sleepwalking into a crisis?

Terry Marsden and Kevin Morgan, Cardiff University

Back to the future?

The historical ability for the UK state to periodically create self-inflicted harm upon its own food system seems to be raising its head again as the country triggers Article 50 to remove itself from the European Union. We should remember that the repeal of the Corn Laws in the 1840s, opening up the UK to cheap food imports (based indeed on subsidised imperial preferences to its colonies), in exchange for colonial penetration of its financial and manufacturing interests and sectors, created the conditions for a long- running agricultural and rural depression in the UK, lasting well into the 1930s. That Imperial regime of ‘free trade’ created much harm to the British food system, its rural areas, and indeed shaped a dependent food diet based upon imports from colonies and other Logo_brexit_new_size2.pngEuropean nations (like Danish  Bacon and Dutch eggs and pork). What is ironically labelled as the ‘full English’ breakfast up and down the land derives from the successful import penetration of its component parts from overseas. The decline in our food-based infrastructure was so bad that, by the onset of the 1st World War, Lloyd George had to go ‘cap in hand’ to the likes of Henry Ford to plead concessions on building his tractors on these shores in order to resolve food and rural labour shortages. Even by 1941 the national farm survey found the agricultural situation in a parlous state, even before the U-boat campaign further disrupted food supplies and led to a  period of prolonged public food rationing until 1954. Continue reading “A food dystopia: Is Britain sleepwalking into a crisis?”

TRANSMANGO GAME JAMS

By Ina van der Brug (HKU)
University of the Arts Utrecht (HKU) is organizing a series of game jams throughout Europe for the EU TRANSMANGO project, using games to help spark the imagination of ordinary people, decision-makers, people working in the world of food, students, children and anyone else you can think of. We want to harness the unique potential of games to challenge, to inspire, to engage and help people explore and understand what food could mean in the future, and how it could work. At the end of 2017 during the end event of the TRANSMANGO project the most appealing concepts will be presented. Teams of the Glasgow Gamejam, Florence gamestorm, Utrecht Gamejam and the Brussels gamestorm will present their gameconcepts.
For more information please look at: http://www.jamtoday.eu

Voedsel in 2050

Wetenschapsweek 2016 – Voedsel in 2050

Tessa Avermaete en Tjitske Anna Zwart

In oktober vindt traditiegetrouw de wetenschapsweek plaats. Over heel Vlaanderen maken jongeren kennis met wetenschap. Dit jaar trokken ook wij onze stoute schoenen aan en waagden het om onze deuren open te zetten voor kinderen van de lagere school. Op maandag 25 en vrijdag 28 oktober verwelkomden we leerlingen van de laatste graad van basisschool De Zevensprong. Samen met de leerlingen wierpen we een blik op Voedsel in 2050.

unnamedHoe zal de voedselmarkt eruit zien in 2050? Wat als de opwarming van de aarde een probleem vormt voor onze landbouw? Gaan we dan over 35 jaar onze eetgewoonten veranderen? En wat als technologische vooruitgang het mogelijk maakt om eten via drones aan huis te leveren? Wat als de Belgische bevolking heel snel gaat groeien, bijvoorbeeld door de toestroom van vluchtelingen? Zal dat een invloed hebben op hoe wij eten? Continue reading “Voedsel in 2050”

Call for Papers: Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting Boston, April 5-9th 2017

Understanding challenges and opportunities for future food and nutrition security

Bridin Carroll

***EXTENDED DEADLINE***

It is well established that the food system is globally integrated and that this system is subject to a wide range of drivers of change including climate, economic concentration and market structure, financial power, resource competition, marginalization, property rules, geo-political shifts, consumer preferences, consumption patterns and nutritional transition. These drivers of change affect how food flows through this system, at all stages from production to consumption (Yakovleva, 2007; Tansey, 1994). It is important to obtain a comprehensive picture of the effects of these drivers, as well as to systematically assess the vulnerabilities of the food system (pressures, hazards, shocks and stresses), in the context of socio-economic, behavioural, technological, institutional and agro-ecological change. To do so will enhance understandings of the new challenges and opportunities that the food sector will face in the future (Ericksen, 2007; Maxwell and Slater, 2003). Due to the intersectional nature of food –operating in biophysical, socio-cultural, economic, political and technological contexts- food system vulnerabilities should be assessed from a range of perspectives (Sobal et al., 1998; Tansey, 1994). Continue reading “Call for Papers: Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting Boston, April 5-9th 2017”