The broadening and deepening of global food production and supply has been a powerful force of economic, social and environmental transformation for the last three decades or more with profound changes, not only to farming systems that become locked into industrial commodity production, but also to adverse environmental effects leading to major ecological ruptures: The productivist agri-industrial model has achieved a remarkable grip over the policy agenda surrounding food security. Yet the consequences include growing concern over emissions of greenhouse gases and impacts upon biological diversity.
The Cork Summer School held in June 2018 proposed policy changes not only in response to the Milan Urban Food Policy pact but also to the review of the EU Common Agricultural Policy which will take place in 2018. The Milan Urban Food Policy Pact, signed by over one hundred cities across the globe, called for co-ordinated international food policies to tackle the pressing issues of food as a human right, the underlying systemic causes of food insecurity and the need to create sustainable and socially just ‘food systems’. See: http://www.foodpolicymilano.org/en/urban-food
The European Commission’s communication on the review of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) states that climate change and preserving the environment is the main challenge facing the EU, and that CAP must play an enhanced role in this battle – not only to protect farmers from the impact of climate change but also to ensure that farming does not contribute to making the problem worse. Stringent new goals will be set at European level to ensure farming contributes fully to helping meet the EU’s international commitments on climate change and sustainability.
Each EU country will develop its own strategic plan – approved by the European Commission – setting out how they intend to meet the objectives and addressing citizens’ concerns regarding sustainable agricultural production, including health, nutrition, food waste and animal welfare.