Beyond the Label

lots of labels Photo: G Online

I often get asked whether I think fair trade is a bad idea, and my response is usually “it’s much better to buy fair trade than to buy unfair trade- but if you care about farmers, ask them what they want”. In general, I’m not favourably inclined toward green consumerism.

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Food Sovereignty – but with details

I know I bang on a lot about food sovereignty on this blog, but it’s not all hot air. I’ve just guest edited a section of The Journal of Peasant Studies (really the most hard-hitting academic journal of its kind) and was lucky enough to pull together some excellent papers and interviews. Although the JPS can get dry in parts, the section I edited was the Grassroots Voices bit, which is intended as a forum and resource for activists. And they’ve decided to make it available free (as opposed to the $100+ individual subscription rate).

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Food Fight at the New York Times

Last week, I chipped in a contribution (below) to a New York Times discussion on biotech. The debate garnered about a quarter as many reader responses as a previous one about the future of laundry in the 21st century. I’m not sure how to interpret that other than, simply, more people have opinions about laundry than about food. But don’t let that put you off visiting the site. There are some very fine (and sometimes very obtuse) comments beneath our interventions. More here.

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