From Food Justice to a Tool of the Status Quo: Three Sub-movements Within Local Food

Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 27 (2):201-210 (2014)
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The local food movement has been touted by some as a profoundly effective way to make our food system become more healthy, just, and sustainable. Others have criticized the movement as being less a challenge to the status quo and more an easily co-opted support offering just another set of choices for affluent consumers. In this paper, we analyze three distinct sub-movements within the local food movement, the individual-focused sub-movement, the systems-focused sub-movement, and the community-focused sub-movement. These movements can be combined within any particular campaign or within the goals of any particular organization or individual activist, but they are nevertheless quite different from each other, and come out of different conceptualizations of what food, people, and locality are. We argue that most of the critiques leveled against local food are actually directed against the individual-focused sub-movement, which is most compatible with the current industrial food system, and perhaps not surprisingly receives the most mainstream attention. Further, we argue that while each movement has its own strengths and weaknesses, it is the community-focused sub-movement that has the most potential to radically transform the global food system



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Author Profiles

Ian Werkheiser
University Of Texas Rio Grande VAlley
Samantha Noll
Washington State University

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Defective food concepts.Andrea Borghini, Nicola Piras & Beatrice Serini - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):12225-12249.
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Epistemological depth in a GM crops controversy.Daniel Hicks - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 50:1-12.

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Growing local food: scale and local food systems governance.Phil Mount - 2012 - Agriculture and Human Values 29 (1):107-121.

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