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Supporting policy with scientific evidence

We mobilise people and resources to create, curate, make sense of and use knowledge to inform policymaking across Europe.

Publication | 5 May 2021

Actionable Frameworks for Food Systems Transformation

The predominant industrial food system is too dependent on fossil fuels and non-renewable inputs that result in pollution and environmental damage. It is also at the root of eroding human health, social cohesion, rural livelihoods, and important social, cultural, and spiritual traditions. Furthermore, it supports an economic system that results in interconnected human and planetary liabilities due to hidden costs, global trade vulnerabilities, declining rural economies, and increased inequality. These impacts are experienced unequally across the globe, with the burden placed on vulnerable and marginalized populations. The future of food is at stake and the status quo is jeopardizing the efforts of many governments, businesses, farmers, civil society organizations, foundations, and others to promote food access, food security, food equity, human health, and a sustainable environment. Equally, continued reliance on single-focused interventions — increased yields, adequate nutrition, environmental sustainability — at the expense of other important issues like equity and fairness are insufficient and are bound to have unintended consequences. Transformative change is needed and food systems reform requires that we craft new and better solutions at all scales through a systems-level approach and deep collaboration between farmers and food systems workers, Indigenous Peoples, government and policymakers, philanthropy, researchers, grassroots movements, and the private sector.