Ethics and International Affairs 35 (1):83-98 (2021)

Mark Budolfson
Rutgers University - New Brunswick
Discourse on food ethics often advocates the anti-capitalist idea that we need less capitalism, less growth, and less globalization if we want to make the world a better and more equitable place. This idea is also familiar from much discourse in global ethics, environment, and political theory, more generally. However, many experts argue that this anti-capitalist idea is not supported by reason and argument, and is actually wrong. As part of the roundtable, “Ethics and the Future of the Global Food System,” the main contribution of this essay is to explain the structure of the leading arguments against this anti-capitalist idea, and in favor of well-regulated capitalism. I initially focus on general arguments for and against globalized capitalism. I then turn to implications for the food, environment, climate change, and beyond. Finally, I clarify the important kernel of truth in the critique of neoliberalism familiar from food ethics, political theory, and beyond—as well as the limitations of that critique.
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DOI 10.1017/s0892679421000083
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